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Evidence shows outrage over property tax assessment is a case of ‘buyer’s remorse’

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A dispute over a property tax assessment of a mobile home park is a case of buyer’s remorse and not indicative of an error by the Indiana Board of Tax Review, the Indiana Tax Court has ruled.

In Shelbyville MHPI, LLC v. Anne Thurston, in her official capacity as Assessor, Shelby County, 49T10-1003-TA-14, the Indiana Tax Court affirmed the IBTR’s decision to uphold the Shelby County assessor’s assessment of the property.  

Shelbyville MHPI, LLC bought a 51.04 acre mobile home park in December 2004 for $4,266,400. This amount was close to an independent appraisal that valued a portion of the park at $4.2 million.

For the 2006 tax year, the Shelby County assessor assessed MHPI’s property at $4,983,300. When MHPI appealed, the Shelby County Property Tax Assessment Board of Appeals reduced the assessment to $4,263,800.

However in October 2008, MHPI appealed to the IBTR, claiming its assessment was still too high. During the hearing, MHPI presented an appraisal that estimated the market value-in-use of the park at $2.9 million as of Jan. 1, 2005. In response, the assessor presented an appraisal which valued the property at $4.2 million as of Nov. 4, 2004. The assessor pointed out that MHPI purchased the park for just over $4.2 million in December 2004 which supported the county’s assessment.

The IBTR found the assessor’s evidentiary presentation more persuasive and upheld MHPI’s assessment.

MHPI appealed to the Indiana Tax Court. It asserted, in part, that the IBTR should have completely rejected or significantly discounted the assessor’s December 2004 sales evidence because MHPI had demonstrated it never would have paid over $4.2 million for the property had it known that Indiana’s re-trending process would cause the property taxes to “sky rocket.”

In addressing that issue, the court found MHPI made an incorrect assumption when it thought its assessment and associated property tax liability would remain relatively constant. The December 2004 sales evidence reflected both the robustness and stability of the manufactured home market for the 2006 tax year but also shows what MHPI believed the property to be worth at the time of purchase.

In opinion, Senior Judge Thomas Fisher wrote, “Accordingly, while MHPI’s current complaints regarding its ‘sky rocketing’ property taxes are indicative of buyer’s remorse, they do not require the complete rejection or substantial discounting of the December 2004 sales evidence.”

 

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  1. As one of the many consumers affected by this breach, I found my bank data had been lifted and used to buy over $200 of various merchandise in New York. I did a pretty good job of tracing the purchases to stores around a college campus just from the info on my bank statement. Hm. Mr. Hill, I would like my $200 back! It doesn't belong to the state, in my opinion. Give it back to the consumers affected. I had to freeze my credit and take out data protection, order a new debit card and wait until it arrived. I deserve something for my trouble!

  2. Don't we have bigger issues to concern ourselves with?

  3. Anyone who takes the time to study disciplinary and bar admission cases in Indiana ... much of which is, as a matter of course and by intent, off the record, would have a very difficult time drawing lines that did not take into account things which are not supposed to matter, such as affiliations, associations, associates and the like. Justice Hoosier style is a far departure than what issues in most other parts of North America. (More like Central America, in fact.) See, e.g., http://www.theindianalawyer.com/indiana-attorney-illegally-practicing-in-florida-suspended-for-18-months/PARAMS/article/42200 When while the Indiana court system end the cruel practice of killing prophets of due process and those advocating for blind justice?

  4. Wouldn't this call for an investigation of Government corruption? Chief Justice Loretta Rush, wrote that the case warranted the high court’s review because the method the Indiana Court of Appeals used to reach its decision was “a significant departure from the law.” Specifically, David wrote that the appellate panel ruled after reweighing of the evidence, which is NOT permissible at the appellate level. **But yet, they look the other way while an innocent child was taken by a loving mother who did nothing wrong"

  5. Different rules for different folks....

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