Tax Assessment & Eminent Domain
Owners and developers of significant commercial properties must consider carefully the implications of the projects on the assessment of the parcel. Similarly, experienced and competent counsel is needed when condemnation proceedings arise. We have represented owners of commercial projects and undeveloped parcels, as well as municipalities, in eminent domain and tax assessment litigation throughout New York State.
Because legislators at all levels have increasingly shifted tax burdens onto the units of government that raise revenues by ad valorem taxation, many municipalities are increasing the assessed values of taxable real property. We appear before administrative bodies on behalf of owners seeking assessment relief and in valuation litigation in trial courts across the State. Working closely with our clients’ appraisers, engineers and accountants in developing strategies for negotiated settlements, we thereafter prepare for trial if a valuation agreement cannot be reached. A significant portion of our practice is on behalf of owners seeking a reduction in the assessed values placed on their properties, such as undeveloped land, office buildings, office parks, commercial and industrial buildings, hotels and motels, and apartment projects of all sizes.
As a result of our experience, we also have been retained by municipal assessors in defending their assessed values in litigation initiated by dissatisfied property owners.
Representative matters include:
- Representing owner of a major Rochester hotel in real estate valuation proceeding to lower assessed value and obtain a tax refund.
- Defending group of municipalities in multiple proceedings by owners of military family housing units seeking reductions in assessed value.
- Representing owner of federal savings and loan association seeking tax relief for bank’s branch buildings.
- Defending town and village in tax assessment litigation brought by Fortune 500 company seeking reduction in the assessed value of manufacturing facility.
- Representing federally licensed developer of multiple hydro-generating dams on rivers of New York State in condemnation of construction sites and in seeking reduced assessments on facilities.
- Defending municipal corporation in the Hudson Valley in series of lawsuits and special proceedings challenging its special assessment methodology and its efforts to expand geographic scope of district.
- Representing commercial property owner in successfully challenging attempted condemnation under New York’s Eminent Domain Procedure Law.
- Representing owners of small low-income subsidized apartment complexes built under federal and state programs seeking property tax relief.