Client Alert - Washoe County Real Estate Update: Are You Paying Too Much for Property Taxes?

[authors: E. Leif Reid, Timothy Clausen, Garrett Gordon]

The deadline to contest property taxes in Washoe County for the 2012-2013 fiscal year is January 17, 2012.

It is no secret that over the past several years both commercial and residential property values in Washoe County, Nevada have plummeted; in some areas, values continue to fall. Despite these decreased property values, property taxes have stayed the same--or in some cases--have increased. It is estimated in Nevada that nearly 60 percent of property owners are paying too much for their property taxes, while only approximately 2 percent are actually taking the necessary actions to contest the taxes and reduce the amount they pay.

At Lewis and Roca, our attorneys help property owners determine whether to take the necessary steps to reduce property taxes for the coming year. Last fiscal year, we helped clients in Washoe County reduce their taxable values by more than $7 million (and approximately $30 million in Clark County). For properties that qualify, we are currently considering property tax appeal cases in Washoe County based on a contingency agreement. A contingency agreement means that unless we are successful in helping property owners reduce property taxes, we receive no fee.

If the taxable value of your property exceeds the full cash value, you may be paying too much for property taxes and you may have grounds to dispute such taxable value and receive a reduction in your property taxes.