Assessment Review Court
The Assessment Review Court allows property owners who do not agree with the valuation the City has determined on their property an opportunity for an independent review of their property.
The St. John's Assessment Act (Section 63(1)) states that Council shall, no later than Jan. 31 of each year, appoint one or more persons to be the Assessment Review Court Commissioner. In addition, section 63(2) specifies that no member of Council or any person who is an employee of Council, can serve on the Assessment Review Court in order to ensure the Court’s impartiality.
The normal practice is for Council to appoint one person who acts as the Commissioner of the Assessment Review Court. The Commissioner listens to appeals filed by property owners and has the power to determine if the assessment determined by the City’s Assessment Division is to increase, decrease or remain the same.
An assessment appeal can be triggered when the property owner receives an annual, new or supplementary assessment in the mail. The recipient of an assessment notice has 30 days from the date of issue of the said notice to file an appeal with the City Clerk. The final date for acceptance of an appeal is stated on each Notice. A fee of $60 for residential and $200 for business appeals is required and will be returned should the appeal be successful. The Assessment Review Court meets as required with the Commissioner’s decision being rendered shortly after the hearing.