Each year the Clerk of the Circuit Court acts as Clerk to the Walton County Value Adjustment Board (VAB). The VAB shall consist of two members of the governing body of the county as elected from the membership of the board of said governing body, one of whom shall be elected chairperson, and one member of the school board as elected from the membership of the school board, and two citizen members, one of whom shall be appointed by the governing body of the county and must own homestead property within the county and one of whom must be appointed by the school board and must own a business occupying commercial space located within the school district. A citizen member may not be a member or an employee of any taxing authority, and may not be a person who represents property owners in any administrative or judicial review of property taxes.
The purpose of the VAB is to rule on objections related to the following:
- Market values established by the Property Appraiser;
- Qualified homestead exemptions, agricultural classifications, or other ad-valorem tax exemptions (governmental, religious, literary, educational, scientific, and charitable) that were not filed by the statutory deadline due to extenuating circumstances;
- Homestead exemptions, agricultural classifications, or other ad-valorem tax exemptions (governmental, religious, literary, educational, scientific, and charitable) that may have been denied by the Property Appraiser.
For questions regarding market values, exemptions, or agricultural classifications, please call or visit the Property Appraiser’s Office.
Qualified exemptions and agricultural classifications: If a property owner is qualified for an exemption or agricultural classification, but failed to apply by the statutory deadline of March 1 due to extenuating circumstances, an application must be filed with the Property Appraiser’s Office. Form DR-486, Petition to Value Adjustment Board (petition) must also be filed with the Clerk of the Circuit Court’s Office on or before the statutory deadline (any time during the taxable year on or before the 25th day following the mailing of the TRIM [Truth in Millage] Notice).
Denials of exemptions and agricultural classifications: If a property owner’s exemption or agricultural classification is denied by the Property Appraiser’s Office, a petition must be filed with the Clerk of the Circuit Court’s Office within the statutory deadline (30 days following the mailing of the denial notice by the Property Appraiser).
Market value issues: Property owners should receive a TRIM Notice from the Property Appraiser’s Office in late summer. If a property owner feels that their property is incorrectly assessed, a petition must be filed with the Clerk of the Circuit Court’s Office within the statutory deadline (any time during the taxable year on or before the 25th day following mailing of the TRIM).
The completed petitions, listed below, with appropriate filing fees may be mailed to or filed in person with Value Adjustment Board, Walton County Clerk of Courts, at P. O. Box 1260 DeFuniak Springs, FL 32435. The contact telephone number is (850) 892-8115 using option 4, or email VAB Clerk BCC firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note that all petitions must be filed by 4:30 p.m. CST on the deadline date, not postmarked. Click on the desired form listed below. Complete the form, print it, sign it and mail to Value Adjustment Board, Walton County Clerk of Courts P. O. Box 1260 DeFuniak Springs, FL 32435. It is also possible to bring the form in to the office located at 571 US Highway 90 East DeFuniak Springs, FL 32433. A $15 filing fee may be required per F.S. 194.013.
A letter will be sent to petitioners advising of the date, time, and location to appear before a special magistrate hired by the VAB to hear petitions. It is the petitioner’s responsibility to prove that there were extenuating circumstances involved in not filing for exemption or agricultural classification in a timely manner, that the Property Appraiser’s Office was not correct in denying an exemption or agricultural classification, or that the market value was incorrect.
For further information on the Value Adjustment Board please visit the following site:
DR486 Petition to VAB – Required for hearing
DR486PORT VAB Transfer of Homestead Assessment Difference
DR485WI Withdrawal of VAB Petition
Value Adjustment Board Calendar
Taxpayer Guide on Petitions to the Value Adjustment Board