Monday, March 23, 2015

10 days left to reduce your business inventory tax liability for 2015

Businesses are required to file a return annually with the DeKalb County assessor’s office by April 1. Businesses that fail to file are assessed a 10 percent penalty that will increase your tax bill with DeKalb County and the City of Decatur for 2015. Failing to file will also result in DeKalb determining a value for you for 2015 rather than accepting your stated value.

Your return (also known as a “PT50”) should list your business’s property including inventory, equipment, furniture, machinery, fixtures, computers, and other assets. This type of property is known as “personal property.” If your property is worth less than $7,500, you should still file a return, but no personal property taxes are levied.

Personal property tax is different from real property taxes which are taxes on buildings and land. It is also different from occupational taxes which are for business licenses. It is also separate from income taxes, but many accountants or tax professionals who prepare income tax returns for businesses may also notify DeKalb of your business property value on your behalf.

The deadline to apply for a Freeport exemption with DeKalb County (which is like a homestead exemption but for businesses’ personal property) is also April 1. Please visit DeKalb’s website or call them at 404-371-2000 for instructions of filing your return, information on filing for DeKalb’s Freeport exemption, or to notify DeKalb if your business has closed or moved. Taking a moment now to focus on your personal property could help reduce the personal property tax bills that you’ll receive from DeKalb and Decatur later this fall.

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