The NYS Tax Department is now authorized to establish a program to collect past-due NYS taxes by suspending eligibility for STAR (school tax relief) exemptions.

The new program allows the Tax Department to identify taxpayers owing back state taxes of $4,500 or more and who own property that is eligible for the STAR exemption. The department will notify these taxpayers that may the STAR exemption for their property may be suspended.

To avoid the suspension, you must respond to the notice by:

• paying the past-due state tax liabilities,

• entering into an installment payment agreement with the department to pay the back taxes or

• showing there has been a mistake of fact regarding the back state taxes.

You will be permitted at least 45 days to respond to the notification. If you fail to respond by the date specified in the notification, the department will notify the local assessor to suspend the eligibility for the STAR exemption for your property.

Once the Tax Department notifies an assessor to suspend the eligibility for the STAR exemption, the property will remain ineligible for the STAR exemption until the department notifies the assessor that the suspension of its eligibility may be lifted.

When your property becomes ineligible for the STAR exemption, the school property tax liability for that property will increase. However, the amount of the property tax increase that is due to the suspension of the STAR exemption will be credited against your back tax liabilities.

If you own property in NYS that is eligible for the STAR exemption and you owe back sales taxes or income taxes to New York State we can help you maintain your exemption. Call us to determine the best course of action to resolve your unpaid NYS taxes.