The Illinois legislature is allowing for the automatic renewal of many property tax exemptions for tax year 2020.
Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi said the change is due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The exemptions will be applied to the second installment of the property tax bill that is issued in summer.
The following exemptions will automatically renew this year for homeowners who received them last year for tax year 2019 and who remained eligible in 2020:
- Homeowner Exemption (annual auto-renewal).
- Senior Exemption (annual auto-renewal).
- Senior Freeze Exemption (2020 auto-renewal).
- Persons with Disabilities Exemption (2020 auto-renewal).
- Veterans with Disabilities Exemption (2020 auto-renewal).
Kaegi said households will be receiving mail from his office confirming the auto-renewal of the exemptions. Property owners are advised that the first installment bill that was recently mailed to property owners does not reflect 2020 exemptions, assessment appeals, or assessment COVID adjustments. By law, it is 55 percent of the total taxes paid the previous year.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has put tremendous pressure on Cook County homeowners. By facilitating auto renewal of selected exemptions and providing online filing for exemptions, we are hoping to keep more Cook County residents home and safe, while administering all the property tax savings they are eligible for,” Kaegi said.
The assessor’s office also identifies households who may be newly eligible for exemptions (such as homes that recently sold before Jan. 1, 2020) and homes that have not received an exemption in the last two years. The assessor’s office mails taxpayer exemption booklets directly to these homeowners. The booklets contain applications and instructions on how to apply for the Homeowner, Senior, and Senior Freeze Exemptions, if eligible.
Applications, due by March 31, also will be posted to the assessor's website at cookcountyassessor.com.
In addition, the assessor’s office determines which properties may qualify under state law for the Longtime Homeowner Exemption, and mails an application to these homeowners. Additional information regarding all exemptions may be found by visiting the assessor’s website, www.cookcountyassessor.com/exemptions.