Business Property Tax Statement (Form 571)

Business property owners must file a Business Property Statement (Form 571) each year detailing the cost of all supplies, equipment, improvements and land owned at each location. The filing requirements are to report a "declaration of costs and other related property as of January 1, 2010." This means for the calendar year 2009, the return to file is the 2010 Form 571L. The deadline to file your 2010 Business Property Statement is April 1, 2010.

Who Must File?
Business Personal Property is defined by the Assessor as all machinery, equipment, fixtures, construction in progress and leasehold improvements held or used in connection with a trade or business. If you own such property in multiple counties, a separate return must be filed with each County Assessor Office. If the Assessor sends you a Business Property Statement, the law requires that you complete, sign, and return the statement to the Assessor’s Office by that county’s filing deadline. Any business that owns Personal Property and/or Leasehold Improvements having a total combined cost or current market value of $100,000 or more is required to file a Business Property Statement even if the Assessor did not send you a formal request to do so. Some counties have a low value ordinance that permits the Assessor to exclude business property assessments of less than $5,000 when the cost of assessment and tax collection exceed the taxes that would have been collected.

Penalty’s for Not Filing:
Like the Internal Revenue Service and other authorities, when a business fails to return a property statement, the Assessor has the authority and responsibility to both determine the assessed value of a company’s assets and impose a penalty. The standard penalty is 10%. In unusual circumstances involving fraud or willful intent, the penalties can be higher.

Filing Extensions:
Some counties offer extensions to the April1, 2010 filing deadline. These extensions often are without risk of penalties as long as the returns are filed no later than May 7, 2010. You will need to check with your particular county to determine their extension guidelines.

If you have any questions or need additional information regarding the filing requirements for these, or other returns, please contact us and we will be happy to assist you. If you would like BPM to prepare these returns for you, please contact your BPM professional as soon as possible so we can arrange a time to gather the information we will need from you.



This publication contains information in summary form and is intended for general guidance only. It is not intended to be a substitute for detailed research nor the exercise of professional judgment. Neither BPM nor any member of the BPM firm can accept any responsibility for loss brought to any person acting or refraining from action as a result of any material in this publication. On any specific matter, reference should be made to the appropriate advisor.