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Judge: Reformatted tax appeal untimely

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Even though a couple had originally filed their tax appeal within the 45-day deadline, the Indiana Tax Court still dismissed their appeal because their reformatted documents and notice of intent to appeal weren't filed until after the deadline.

In E.L. & B.L. Holsapple v. Monroe County Assessor, No. 49T10-0907, TA-33, the Holsapples wanted to appeal the final determination by the Indiana Board of Tax Review regarding the real property assessment of their duplex, pole barn, and one acre of land for the 2006 and 2007 tax years. The board issued its final determination May 8, 2009. The Holsapples, pro se, filed a handwritten petition to appeal with the clerk's office June 22. The petition was returned two days later for reformatting. The Holsapples resubmitted the documents July 3 and the clerk forwarded and mailed copies of the petition to the appropriate parties.

The Monroe County Assessor moved to dismiss the appeal for lack of subject matter jurisdiction because the petition wasn't filed within 45 days. The Holsapples maintained the Tax Court should recognize the June 22 date as the date they filed and consider the reformatted petition to be an amendment to that filing. They believed the letter they received from the clerk requesting them to reformat their petition granted them a reasonable extension to file.

Even if Tax Court Judge Thomas Fisher assumed the reformatted petition relates back to June 22, the court still lacks jurisdiction to hear the appeal because copies of the petitions weren't served nor was notice of intent to appeal filed with the Indiana Board of Tax Review within the deadline, he wrote. As such, he granted the assessor's motion to dismiss.

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  1. Your article is a good intro the recent amendments to Fed.R.Civ.P. For a much longer - though not necessarily better -- summary, counsel might want to read THE CHIEF UMPIRE IS CHANGING THE STRIKE ZONE, which I co-authored and which was just published in the January issue of THE VERDICT (the monthly publication of the Indiana Trial Lawyers Association).

  2. Thank you, John Smith, for pointing out a needed correction. The article has been revised.

  3. The "National institute for Justice" is an agency for the Dept of Justice. That is not the law firm you are talking about in this article. The "institute for justice" is a public interest law firm. http://ij.org/ thanks for interesting article however

  4. I would like to try to find a lawyer as soon possible I've had my money stolen off of my bank card driver pressed charges and I try to get the information they need it and a Social Security board is just give me a hold up a run around for no reason and now it think it might be too late cuz its been over a year I believe and I can't get the right information they need because they keep giving me the runaroundwhat should I do about that

  5. It is wonderful that Indiana DOC is making some truly admirable and positive changes. People with serious mental illness, intellectual disability or developmental disability will benefit from these changes. It will be much better if people can get some help and resources that promote their health and growth than if they suffer alone. If people experience positive growth or healing of their health issues, they may be less likely to do the things that caused them to come to prison in the first place. This will be of benefit for everyone. I am also so happy that Indiana DOC added correctional personnel and mental health staffing. These are tough issues to work with. There should be adequate staffing in prisons so correctional officers and other staff are able to do the kind of work they really want to do-helping people grow and change-rather than just trying to manage chaos. Correctional officers and other staff deserve this. It would be great to see increased mental health services and services for people with intellectual or developmental disabilities in the community so that fewer people will have to receive help and support in prisons. Community services would like be less expensive, inherently less demeaning and just a whole lot better for everyone.

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