Laws, Regulations & Annotations

Property Taxes Law Guide – Revision 2011
 

Revenue and Taxation Code

Property Taxation

Part 2. Assessment

Chapter 3. Assessment Generally

Article 2.5. Change in Ownership Reporting*

Section 480

480. Change in ownership statement. [Repealed by Stats. 1981, Ch. 1141, in effect October 2, 1981, operative January 1, 1982.]

480. Change in ownership statement. (a) Whenever there occurs any change in ownership of real property or of a manufactured home that is subject to local property taxation and is assessed by the county assessor, the transferee shall file a signed change in ownership statement in the county where the real property or manufactured home is located, as provided for in subdivision (c). In the case of a change in ownership where the transferee is not locally assessed, no change in ownership statement is required.

(b) The personal representative shall file a change in ownership statement with the county recorder or assessor in each county in which the decedent owned real property at the time of death that is subject to probate proceedings. The statement shall be filed prior to or at the time the inventory and appraisal is filed with the court clerk. In all other cases in which an interest in real property is transferred by reason of death, including a transfer through the medium of a trust, the change in ownership statement or statements shall be filed by the trustee (if the property was held in trust) or the transferee with the county recorder or assessor in each county in which the decedent owned an interest in real property within 150 days after the date of death.

(c) Except as provided in subdivision (d), the change in ownership statement as required pursuant to subdivision (a) shall be declared to be true under penalty of perjury and shall give that information relative to the real property or manufactured home acquisition transaction as the board shall prescribe after consultation with the California Assessors' Association. The information shall include, but not be limited to, a description of the property the parties to the transaction, the date of acquisition, the amount, if any, of the consideration paid for the property, whether paid in money or otherwise, and the terms of the transaction. The change in ownership statement shall not include any question that is not germane to the assessment function. The statement shall contain a notice informing the transferee of the property tax relief available under Section 69.5. The statement shall contain a notice that is printed, with the title in at least 12-point boldface type and the body in at least 8-point boldface type, in the following form:

"Important Notice"

"The law requires any transferee acquiring an interest in real property or manufactured home subject to local property taxation, and that is assessed by the county assessor, to file a change in ownership statement with the county recorder or assessor. The change in ownership statement must be filed at the time of recording or, if the transfer is not recorded, within 45 days of the date of the change in ownership, except that where the change in ownership has occurred by reason of death the statement shall be filed within 150 days after the date of death or, if the estate is probated, shall be filed at the time the inventory and appraisal is filed. The failure to file a change in ownership statement within 45 days from the date of a written request by the assessor results in a penalty of either: (1) one hundred dollars ($100), or (2) 10 percent of the taxes applicable to the new base year value reflecting the change in ownership of the real property or manufactured home, whichever is greater, but not to exceed two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500) if that failure to file was not willful. This penalty will be added to the assessment roll and shall be collected like any other delinquent property taxes, and be subject to the same penalties for nonpayment."

(d) The change in ownership statement may be attached to or accompany the deed or other document evidencing a change in ownership filed for recording, in which case the notice, declaration under penalty of perjury, and any information contained in the deed or other transfer document otherwise required by subdivision (c) may be omitted.

(e) If the document evidencing a change in ownership is recorded in the county recorder's office, then the statement shall be filed with the recorder at the time of recordation. However, the recordation of the deed or other document evidencing a change in ownership shall not be denied or delayed because of the failure to file a change of ownership statement, or filing of an incomplete statement, in accordance with this subdivision. If the document evidencing a change in ownership is not recorded or is recorded without the concurrent filing of a change in ownership statement, then the statement shall be filed with the assessor no later than 45 days from the date the change in ownership occurs, except that where the change in ownership has occurred by reason of death the statement shall be filed within 150 days after the date of death or, if the estate is probated, shall be filed at the time the inventory and appraisal is filed.

(f) Whenever a change in ownership statement is filed with the county recorder's office, the recorder shall transmit, as soon as possible, the original statement or a true copy thereof to the assessor along with a copy of every recorded document as required by Section 255.7.

(g) The change in ownership statement may be filed with the assessor through the United States mail, properly addressed with the postage prepaid.

(h) In the case of a corporation, the change in ownership statement shall be signed either by an officer of the corporation or an employee or agent who has been designated in writing by the board of directors to sign those statements on behalf of the corporation. In the case of a partnership, limited liability company, or other legal entity, the statement shall be signed by an officer, partner, manager, or an employee or agent who has been designated in writing by the partnership, limited liability company, or legal entity.

(i) No person or entity acting for or on behalf of the parties to a transfer of real property shall incur liability for the consequences of assistance rendered to the transferee in preparation of any change in ownership statement, and no action may be brought or maintained against any person or entity as a result of that assistance.

Nothing in this section shall create a duty, either directly or by implication, that the assistance be rendered by any person or entity acting for or on behalf of parties to a transfer of real property.

History.—Added by Stats. 1981, Ch. 1141, in effect October 2, 1981, operative January 1, 1982. Stats. 1987, Ch. 186, in effect July 23, 1987, added the fourth sentence of subdivision (c). Stats. 1988, Ch. 1199, in effect January 1, 1989, substituted "personal representative" for "administrator or executor" after "the" in the first sentence, and substituted "appraisal" for "appraisement" after "inventory and" and added "clerk" after "court" in the second sentence of subdivision (b). Stats. 1994, Ch. 1222, in effect September 30, 1994, added "there occurs" after "Whenever", substituted "manufactured home that is" for "mobilehome", deleted comma after "taxation", deleted "which" after "taxation and", deleted "occurs," after "assessor," and substituted "manufactured home" for "mobilehome" after "property or" in the first sentence of subdivision (a); substituted "in which" for "where" after "county", and added "that is . . . proceedings" after "death" in the first sentence of subdivision (b); added "prior to or" after "filed" and added the third sentence in subdivision (b); substituted "that" for "such" after "shall give" and substituted "manufactured home" for "mobilehome" in the first sentence of the first paragraph of subdivision (c), substituted "that" for "which" after "question" in the third sentence of the first paragraph of subdivision (c), substituted "manufactured home" for "mobilehome" after "property or" and substituted "that" for "which" in the first sentence of the second paragraph of subdivision (c), added ", except that . . . filed" after "ownership" in the second sentence of the second paragraph of subdivision (c), substituted "manufactured home" for "mobilehome" after "property or" and substituted "that" for "such" after "($2,500) if" in the third sentence of the second paragraph of subdivision (c); substituted "the" for "such" after "case" in subdivision (d); added ", except that . . . filed" after "occurs" in the third sentence of subdivision (e); substituted "those" for "such" after "to sign" in the first sentence of subdivision (h), added ", limited liability company," after "partnership" twice, and added "manager," after "partner," in the second sentence of subdivision (h); deleted "such" after "against any" and substituted "that" for "such" after "result of" in the first paragraph of subdivision (i); and substituted "the" for "such" after "implication, that" in the second paragraph of subdivision (i).

Note.—Section 14 of Stats. 1981, Ch. 1141, provided the provisions of this act shall take immediate effect and shall apply to any change in ownership occurring on or after March 1, 1975. However, all changes in value shall be made effective commencing with the 1982–83 fiscal year. No escape assessments shall be levied and no refund shall be made for any years prior to the 1982–83 fiscal year for any increases or decreases in value made for the 1982–83 fiscal year or fiscal years thereafter as the result of the enactment of this act.

It is also the intent of the Legislature that any penalty imposed pursuant to subdivision (j) of Section 480 of the Revenue and Taxation Code prior to the enactment of this act shall be canceled or refunded, unless a written request was made by the assessor or Board of Equalization to file a change in ownership statement and the requested person or legal entity failed to file that statement within 45 days from the date of request.

* Article 2.5 was added by Stats. 1979, Ch. 242, in effect July 10, 1979.

Note.—Section 44 of Stats. 1979, Ch. 242, provided no payment by state to local governments because of this act.