Coronavirus (COVID-19) Impact on Your Property Taxes


According to the U.S. Department of Labor, there were more than 6.6 million jobless claims in the week ending March 28, as more and more people stay home.1

Coronavirus infections and COVID-19 have devastated the U.S. job market. As the global pandemic persists, federal, state, and local governments have sought to ease the financial burden on taxpayers who are out of work and/or too ill to make payments.

Many tax offices are now closed to the public. This means in-person payments are out. County tax collectors in California have fought to keep the April 10 deadline, even as the state government and Governor Gavin Newsom have sought options for extending the due date for residential and commercial property owners who have been financially impacted. He has even discussed the matter with the California State Association of Counties.

Counties rely on tax revenue to support local school districts, public works projects, and regional government agencies. State counties insist that, if any state-ordered delay takes place, the state government replaces potential revenue lost by such a measure.2

County tax collectors have said they don’t have the power to change deadlines for paying property taxes. However, local officials may look at your personal financial condition to determine whether to waive penalties. They may waive late fees if you are unable to pay on time, especially if you’ve lost your job or have become ill.

Property Tax Due Dates

Los Angeles County Property Tax Due April 10th

Keith Knox, Treasurer and Tax Collector for Los Angeles County, said that people who are unable to pay on time can submit a request for penalty cancellation online starting April 11. A special team is being set up to process such requests. To be approved, you must demonstrate you’ve been financially affected by the outbreak.

Orange County Property Tax Due April 10th

A statement by the Orange County government noted the treasurer doesn’t have the authority to change the due date and doesn’t believe it will be extended. However, it noted the Treasurer-Tax Collector has the legal authorization “to cancel penalties, costs, and other charges” if an individual has reasonable cause or circumstances beyond their control affecting their ability to pay. The county also highlights the ability to pay online using its eCheck payment option.

San Bernardino County Property Tax Due April 10th

San Bernardino County is also encouraging property owners to pay taxes remotely via different payment methods. You can pay online or by phone. The county is accepting credit card payment methods as well. However, a convenience fee will be charged by a third-party vendor. If you don’t meet the second installment property tax deadline, a 10% penalty will be added to your balance, plus a $10 fee.

Ventura County Property Tax Due April 10th

The Treasurer-Tax Collector’s East County Satellite Office has been closed for the tax season. If a 2nd installment of the 2019/20 Annual Secured property tax bill isn’t paid on or before April 10, it will become delinquent. Delinquency means you may be penalized 10% on the unpaid taxes. The office also states online that it cannot extend the payment deadline, but also mentions possible penalty waivers on a case-by-case basis and paying tax bills online or by USPS mail.

San Diego County Property Tax Due April 10th

According to the San Diego County Treasurer-Tax Collector’s Office, the next installment of property taxes due cannot be postponed. Nonetheless, a penalty cancellation request can be filed to waive late/penalty fees. Requests will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis and must include documentation of how you are impacted by the virus such that it interferes with your ability to pay. Within the next several weeks, you’ll receive notification whether the request is granted or denied, along with an explanation why.

Call OakTree Law for Financial Guidance

If you owe property taxes and are facing financial difficulties due to the coronavirus outbreak, contact OakTree Law to discuss your options. We know how strict state law is. But our Los Angeles bankruptcy attorneys can find solutions that work for you, especially if you’re facing bankruptcy or foreclosure. To discuss loan modification or mortgage litigation, or receive legal counseling related to your property tax difficulties, we are open for business. Call 562-219-2979 or request a free evaluation online to learn more.