Tax

Office

Orange County, Texas

Karen Fisher

Tax Assessor-Collector

 

Tax Records and

Tax Payments Online

 

 

 

 

Convenience Fees are charged by Certified Payments and are non-refundable:

ACH (eCheck) - $1.50 each

Credit/Debit Card Fee - 2.5% of

amount charged

 

Pay by phone - 1-866-549-1010

Use Bureau Code # 1122333

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How do I contact the Orange County Tax Office?

 

You may contact our office by phone, mail, email, or in person.

                                                          (409) 769-0064

        • Mail - P. O. Box 1568

                                                    Orange, TX 77631-1568

        • In Person - Orange:  123 S. 6th Street

                                                                Orange, TX 77630

                                                      Vidor:  155 Wilson

                                                                  Vidor, TX 77662

 

 

TAX PAYMENTS

 

 

 

When are tax bills mailed and due?

 

Tax bills for each year are usually mailed in October.  Taxes are due upon receipt of the bill.  In order to be timely, payments must be paid or postmarked on or before January 31st.  If January 31 falls on the weekend the next business day is considered on time.

 

 

 

Where can I pay my property taxes?  What forms of payment are accepted?

 

You can pay by cash, check, money order, or debit card/credit card at either of our office locations.  For your convenience both locations have an outside drop box for payments which is accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Drop box pick up is 8:00 am on the following business day.

 

Payments made by mail should be mailed to:

Lynda Gunstream

Tax Assessor-Collector

Orange County

P. O. Box 1568

Orange, TX 77631-1568

 

Please make your check payable to Lynda Gunstream or to the Orange County Tax Office.  In order to insure proper credit it is important to include the stub from your tax bill, a copy of your tax bill, or account numbers.

 

A non-refundable surcharge added to each credit card transaction.  A flat fee charged for e-Checks.

 

 

 

Why do I make checks payable to Lynda Gunstream?

 

The County Tax Assessor-Collector is an office created by the Texas Constitution.  Under the Constitution’s provisions, the Assess-Collector is personally liable for the funds collected and deposited in separate bank accounts under his/her control.  The Assessor-Collector is relieved of this responsibility and liability when he/she deposits the funds with the County Treasurer.

 

 

Can I pay my property taxes online?

 

Yes.  The Tax Office accepts full or partial payment of property taxes online.  Property taxpayers may also use any combination of credit cards and/or e-Checks for payment.  A non-refundable surcharge of 2.5% will be added to each credit card transaction.  A flat fee of $1.50 is charged for e-Checks.

 

 

 

Can I pay my property taxes by telephone?

 

Yes.  The Tax Office accepts full or partial payment of property taxes by an automated phone system by calling (866) 549-1010.  You will need to use Bureau Code: 1122333. 

 

 

 

Are partial payments accepted?

 

Yes.  Partial payments are accepted.  However, any remaining amount left unpaid will accrue penalty and interest.  Current taxes will begin to accrue penalty and interest on February 1.  Delinquent taxes accrue penalty and interest monthly.  Attorney fees attach to amount remaining due on April 1 for personal property and July 1 for real property.

 

 

 

Why do I have to pay penalty and interest when I never received a tax bill?

 

As a property owner, it is your responsibility to make sure that you receive a bill and that it is paid on time.  The bills are mailed and the taxes are due at the same time each year.  If you have not received a bill by the middle of December, you should call and request that a statement be sent to you.  You are also able to call and get the amount due over the phone as early as October or look up your account on our website.  It is not necessary to have a statement to make payment as long as you have your account number and know the correct amount to remit.

 

 

Are payment arrangements available?

 

The Tax Office will accept any payment amount for the current year taxes; however, after February 1st, penalty and interest begin to accrue for any remaining delinquent taxes.  To establish payment arrangements you can contact our office.  Under the law, penalties and interest continue to accrue during payment arrangements. More information on payment arrangements can be found by clicking here.

 

 

 

Who is responsible for paying taxes?

 

State law automatically places a tax lien on property on January 1 of each year to ensure that taxes are paid. The person who owns or acquires a property on or after January 1 of the tax year is personally liable for the tax. A person is not relieved of the obligation because he no longer owns the property. (Sec. 32.07, Texas Property Tax Code).

 

 

 

What happens if I can not pay my taxes by the due date?

 

The deadline for paying the current year tax is January 31st.  Penalty and interest begin to accrue on February 1st, Sec. 33.01, Texas Property Tax Code.  If taxes are not paid by January 31st, penalties and interest will accrue as follows:

 

IF TAX        PAID IN:

ADD

 

 

 

 

IF TAX         PAID IN:

ADD

 

 

 

 

 

PENALTY

 

INTEREST

 

TOTAL

 

PENALTY

 

INTEREST

 

TOTAL

FEBRUARY

6%

+

1%

=

7%

MAY

9%

+

4%

=

13%

MARCH

7%

+

2%

=

9%

JUNE

10%

+

5%

=

15%

APRIL  *

8%

+

3%

=

11%

JULY **

12%

+

6%

=

18%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Penalty reaches a 12% maximum and  interest will increase 1% each month thereafter.

 

*Personal property and mobile home accounts not paid in full by March 31st of the year in which they become delinquent will be referred to the delinquent tax attorney for enforced collection, and will become subject to an additional penalty of up to 20% of the taxes, penalties, and interest due, pursuant to Sec. 33.11 of the Property Tax Code of the State of Texas

 

**All real property accounts not paid in full by June 30th of the year in which they become delinquent will be referred to the delinquent tax attorney for enforced collection, and will become subject to additional penalty of up to 20% of the taxes, penalty and interest then due, pursuant to Sec. 33.07 of the Property Tax Code of the State of Texas

 

 

 

Are there payment options available to taxpayers with an age 65 or older, disabled person exemption, or disabled veteran exemption or their surviving spouse?

 

Yes.  ONLY taxpayers with an Age 65 or older, Disabled Person Exemption, or Disabled Veteran Exemption or their surviving spouse  may pay current taxes on their residence homestead in four equal installments without penalty or interest.  In order to be eligible, installments are required to be set up before March 1. Taypayer MUST request the quarter payments in writing each year and MUST pay at least:

  • 1/4 before March 1st

  • 1/4 before April 1st

  • 1/4 before June 1st

  • 1/4 before August 1st

 

If an installment is missed, a 6% penalty is imposed and interest begins to accrue.

 

 

 

 

TAX BILLS

 

 

 

What if I did not receive a tax bill?

 

If you do not receive a tax bill, you can contact our office, (409) 882-7971 or (409) 769-0064, or visit our website  to find out how much your taxes are.  Failure to receive a tax bill does not affect the validity of the tax, penalty, or interest, the due date, the existence of a tax lien, or any procedure instituted to collect a tax (sec. 31.01 (g), Texas Property Tax Code).

 

 

Why did my tax bill come to me instead of my mortgage company?

 

Either your mortgage company did not request the statement, or the request was received too late.  Please contact your mortgage company for additional information.

 

 

What if the information (i.e. Name, Address, etc…) is wrong on my bill?  How do I get it corrected?

 

It is the OWNER’S responsibility to ensure the information on their Tax Bill is correct.  All requests for information changes should be made through the Orange County Appraisal District.

 

Why did I receive a bill on property I no longer own?

 

The tax records showed you as the owner when the bills were printed.  Contact the Orange County Appraisal District to have this corrected.

 

 

 

I paid off my house and my mortgage company will not be paying my taxes this year.  How do I make sure that I receive my tax bill?

 

As long as a bill is not requested by a mortgage company, it is automatically mailed to the owner on record.  The bills are generally mailed out in October.  If you do not receive your bill by mid-December, it is your responsibility to contact our office to request a statement or find out the amount due.  Taxes are due upon receipt of the bill and are due by January 31st of the year following the year the tax was incurred and become delinquent February 1.

 

 

What is a tax account number and what is meant by a “legal description”?

 

The tax account number is assigned by the Orange County Appraisal District and is used to help identify each piece of property.  Normally, only one account number is assigned to each parcel.  The legal description describes the property as a parcel in a larger tract (i.e. Lot 1, Block 2 Bahama Heights), so it can be located on a map.  If the legal description is wrong on your statement, this error should be directed to the Orange County Appraisal District for proper handling.

 

 

Can I be mailed a bill on my taxes for part of the year?

 

No.  The Orange County Tax Office does not prorate taxes; the tax bill must reflect the full amount of taxes owed for that year.

 

 

Why am I getting a delinquent tax bill on a parcel I just purchased?

 

Tax law requires this office to mail delinquent tax bills to the current owner of the property rather than to the previous owner.  Because a tax lien exists against that property, it is in the current owner’s best interest to have knowledge of that lien.  If a lawsuit were filed to foreclose the lien, the current owner, not the previous owner, risks losing the property to foreclosure.

 

 

 

Appraised Value

 

 

 

How was the appraised value of my property figured?

 

Placing a taxable value on real property and personal property is a function of the Orange County Appraisal District, not the Orange County Tax Office.  Please contact the Orange County Appraisal District in regards to the appraised value of property.

 

 

 

How can I protest my appraised value?

 

All protests must be directed to the Orange County Appraisal District.  The usual deadline for filing written protests is on or before May 31 or 30 days after the date the appraisal district sends a notice of appraised value, whichever is later. 

 

 

 

The Orange County Appraisal District reduced my value.  When will I receive a corrected statement?

 

You will receive a corrected tax bill after our office receives the correction from the Orange County Appraisal District if taxes are still owed on the account.

 

 

 

What do I do if one of the taxing entities on my bill is incorrect?

 

Contact the Orange County Appraisal District.

 

 

EXEMPTIONS

 

 

What are exemptions?  How do I file for an exemption?

 

Exemptions reduce the taxable value of property and lower the tax amount billed.  Common exemptions are: General Residence Homestead, Disabled Person, Age 65 or Older, and Disabled Veteran.  To file for an exemption, contact the Orange County Appraisal District.

 

 

How can I find out what exemptions are on my property?

 

Exemptions are listed on the tax bills.  You may also contact our office or the Orange County Appraisal District to find out the exemptions on your property.

 

 

What if my exemptions are missing or incorrect?

 

To apply for exemptions or have exemptions corrected you will need to contact the Orange County Appraisal District.

 

If property taxes are paid to the Orange County Tax Office, why are exemptions filed with the Orange County Appraisal District?

 

The Orange County Appraisal District is responsible for setting the taxable value of your property each year.  Exemptions affect property value and must be approved by the appraisal district.  The Orange County Tax Office calculates and collects property tax, we do not determine the value of the property.

 

 

 

 

 

RENDITION PENALTY

 

 

 

What is a rendition penalty?

 

Chapter 22, Texas Tax Code, requires owners of business personal property to file a rendition describing the property with the chief appraiser by April 15 of each year and also perscribes the penalty for failure to comply.

 

The rendition penalty is a penalty created by the Texas Legislature on those businesses failing to file their business personal property rendition, or filing their rendition late, with the Orange County Appraisal District.

 

The rendition penalty is generally equal to 10% of the amount of property taxes ultimately imposed on the property.

 

 

 

How is the rendition penalty protested?  How is a waiver requested?

 

The Tax Office does not have the legal authority to waive or reduce the penalty.  All protests and/or waivers should be directed to the Orange County Appraisal District.

 

 

 

I filed all of my rendition paper work by the deadline.  How do I get the penalty removed?

 

Contact the Orange County Appraisal District.

 

 

 

Where does the rendition money collected for the rendition penalty go?

 

The penalty is divided:  5% to the appraisal district and 95% to the applicable taxing jurisdictions.

 

 

 

MISCELLANEOUS

 

 

Why are my taxes higher this year than in previous year?

 

Check your exemptions.  If you were not granted an exemption allowed, contact the Orange County Appraisal District.

 

The appraised value of the property may be greater than in the previous year.  If so, an explanation for the increase will be sent by the Orange County Appraisal District.

 

The tax rate may have increased and if so, the amount of taxes owed could be more than the previous year.  The breakdown of the tax rates for the various taxing entities is shown on the tax bill.

 

 

 

What is a tax certificate?  How is one obtained?

 

A tax certificate is a certificate issued by the tax assessor-collector that shows the amount of taxes, penalties, interest, and any other known costs and expenses due on a property according to the current tax records, Sec. 31.08, Texas Property Tax Code. 

 

A tax certificate may be issued by either location of the Orange County Tax Office.  The fee for a tax certificate is $10.00 and must be paid for with cash.

 

 

 

Where can more detailed information explaining the entire Property Tax System be found?

 

The State Comptroller’s Office provides a comprehensive overview of this process, entitled Property Tax Basics.

This document details the four phases of the annual property tax levy:

  • Appraisal or property valuation (including responsibilities of the Appraisal District and exemptions available to reduce property taxes);
  • Equalization or value protests;
  • Taxation or adopting budgets and setting tax rates (also known as the “assessment” phase); and
  • Collection or payment from taxpayers (including payment deadlines, deferring payments, and consequences of failure to pay).

It also provides a calendar of due dates for all yearly taxing events and a Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights.

How do I contact the Orange County Tax Office?

 

 

Tax Payments

 

When are tax bills mailed and due?

Where can I pay my property taxes?  What forms of payment are accepted?

Why do I make checks payable to Lynda Gunstream?

Can I pay my property taxes online?

Can I pay my property taxes by telephone?

Are partial payments accepted?

Why do I have to pay penalty and interest when I never received a tax bill?

Are payment arrangements available?

Who is responsible for paying taxes?

What happens if I can not pay my taxes by the due date?

Are there payment options available to taxpayers with an age 65 or older, disabled person exemption, or disabled veteran exemption or their surviving spouse?

 

Tax Bills

 

What if I did not receive a tax bill?

Why did my tax bill come to me instead of my mortgage company?

What if the information (i.e. Name, Addres, etc...) is wrong on my bill?  How do I get it corrected?

Why did I receive a bill on property I no longer own?

I paid off my house and my mortgage company will not be paying my taxes this year.  How do I make sure that I receive my tax bill?

What is a tax account number and what if meant by a "legal description"?

Can I be mailed a bill on my taxes for part of the year?

Why am I getting a delinquent tax bill on a parcel I just purchased?

 

 

Appraised Value

 

How was the appraised value of my property figured?

How can I protest my appraised value?

The Orange County Appraisal District reduced my value.  When will I receive a corrected statement?

What do I do if one of the taxing entities on my bill is incorrect?

 

 

Exemptions

 

What are exemptions?  How do I file for an exemption?

How can I find out what exemptions are on my property?

What if my exemptions are missing or incorrect?

If property taxes are paid to the Orange County Tax Office, why are exemptions filed with the Orange County Appraisal District?

 

 

Rendition Penalty

 

What is a rendition penalty?

How is the rendition penalty protested?  How is a waiver requested?

I filed all of my rendition paper work by the dealine.  How do I get the penalty removed?

Where does the rendition money collected for the rendition penalty go?

 

Miscellaneous

 

Why are my taxes higher this year than I previous year?

What is a tax certificate?  How is one obtained?

Where can more detailed information explaining the entire Property Tax System be found?

Property Tax

FAQs