SeniorLAW Center

PHILADELPHIA PROPERTY TAX ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS FOR SENIOR HOMEOWNERS

Philadelphia’s Real Estate Tax Ordinance is Helping Low-Income Senior Citizens

In 2012-2013, SeniorLAW Center collaborated with representatives from Philadelphia Department of Revenue, its tax collecting law firms, and other legal services agencies to draft a new ordinance addressing real estate tax collection. The ordinance, which went into effect on October 15, 2013 as Philadelphia Code §19-1305, creates a clear, consistent system for property tax collection. It also provides senior homeowners who live in their properties the opportunity to pay their delinquent property taxes in affordable monthly installments and therefore avoid real estate tax foreclosure.

Here are some important points about the ordinance:
• Every owner occupant in Philadelphia has the statutory right to one affordable payment agreement to pay delinquent real estate taxes.
• The monthly payment amount under the agreement is determined based on the homeowner’s income, and not on the size of the delinquency. If a homeowner has significant monthly expenses such as burdensome medical bills, the homeowner can apply for an “individual financial assessment,” where both income and expenses are used to determine the monthly payment amount.
• After the homeowner pays off the principal of the tax delinquency, eligible low-income homeowners qualify for partial or total waiver of interest and penalties.
• The ordinance contains many procedural protections for homeowners, including a requirement that the City provide written notices to the taxpayer throughout the tax collection process.
• Under the terms of the agreement, the homeowner must pay all current real estate taxes going forward! This requirement can be difficult for senior citizens with limited fixed incomes. Fortunately, Philadelphia offers many property tax programs that help keep taxes at an affordable level for low-income seniors. For a comprehensive list of Philadelphia property tax programs, Click Here for  more information.

The ordinance has been largely successful and has helped many senior citizens remain in their homes, and SeniorLAW Center continues to represent seniors facing complex real estate tax issues and complications.

For assistance with Philadelphia real estate tax matters, call the Pennsylvania SeniorLAW HelpLine at 215-988-1242.

 

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PHILADELPHIA PROPERTY TAX ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS FOR SENIOR HOMEOWNERS

Philadelphia’s Real Estate Tax Ordinance is Helping Low-Income Senior Citizens In 2012-2013, SeniorLAW Center collaborated with representatives from Philadelphia Department of Revenue, its tax collecting law firms, and other legal services agencies to draft a new ordinance addressing real estate tax collection. The ordinance, which went into effect on October 15, 2013 as Philadelphia Code §1… click for more

SUPPLEMENTAL SECURITY INCOME (SSI)

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a nationwide federal means-based assistance program implemented to provide a subsistence amount of income for the elderly or disabled. The program is administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA). In order to qualify for SSI benefits, you must be blind or disabled, or be 65 years or older. Some categories of non-citizens may be eligible. In addition… click for more

REVERSE MORTGAGES

Reverse mortgages are a special type of loan that allows homeowners, 62 and older, to borrow against the equity in their homes. Reverse mortgages can help some older homeowners meet financial needs, but they can jeopardize retirement security if not used carefully. The most common reverse mortgage complaint is about difficulty with changing the loan terms and problems communicating with loan servi… click for more

MORTGAGE FORECLOSURE ISSUES FOR SENIORS

The Residential Mortgage Foreclosure Diversion Pilot Program and Its Impact on Seniors In April 2008, in response to an alarming increase in the number of residential mortgage foreclosures filed and sheriff sales of homes scheduled, the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas issued a General Court Regulation which authorized the Court to implement a new case management program, the Residential Mortga… click for more

PREVENTING FINANCIAL EXPLOITATION: What Every Senior Needs to Know

Financial exploitation of senior citizens is shockingly prevalent throughout the United States and affects seniors at all economic levels.  It propels low-income senior citizens further into poverty and robbing many others of their savings, their financial security, and even their homes.  For those who are low-income or just above, it is particularly devastating. SeniorLAW Center enourages se… click for more

MEDICAL CONSENT: An Important Tool for Grandparents and Others Caring for Children

Grandparents and other elders are playing a larger and larger role in the care of young children in our community.  In Philadelphia alone, advocates estimate that more than 60,000 children are being raised by relative caregivers, primarily grandparents and other elderly family members.  This accounts for 1 in 6 children in our community. These elders — known as kinship caregivers — have a… click for more

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