What is Tangible Personal Property?

Tangible Personal Property is everything other than real estate that has value by itself. It includes such items as furniture, fixtures, tools, machinery, household appliances, signs, equipment, leasehold improvements, supplies, leased equipment and any other equipment used in a business or to earn income.

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Who Must File a Tangible Personal Property return?

Anyone who owns, or is in possession of, Tangible Personal Property on January 1 who has either a sole proprietorship, partnership, company, corporation, or is a self-employed agent or contractor may be required to file. If you have received a waiver letter and you have not added property that would cause the total value to exceed $25,000, you are not required to file a return. If the location of your business has changed, or if there has been a change in ownership, you must file a return.

The property appraiser considers three generally accepted approaches in the development of market value estimates: the cost approach, sales comparison approach and the income approach. The applicability of each approach depends on the character of the property and the availability of market data.

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Why must I file a return?

Florida Statute 193.052 requires that all Tangible Personal Property be reported each year to the Property Appraiser’s Office. If you receive a return, our office has determined that you may have personal property to report. If you feel the form is not applicable, the form MUST be returned. Failure to receive a Personal Property Tax Return (DR-405) does not relieve you of your obligation to file.

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How can I obtain this form?

At the beginning of each year, a return is mailed as a courtesy to most existing Tangible Personal Property owners who are required to file. If you do not receive one, contact the Property Appraiser’s Office, or download a return from our website.

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Can I file my return online?

Most businesses qualify to file online, and it is fast and easy. In most cases, the equipment reported on your prior-year return will already be listed on your online return, and you will only need to make additions and deletions. See Online Filing on our website.

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What if I receive more than one tax return?

You may have property at more than one location. If you have more than one location, the assets of each should be listed separately on the appropriate return.

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What if I have no assets to report? Do I still have to file a return?

If you feel you do not have anything to report, fill out items 1 through 9a on the return and attach an explanation as to why nothing was reported. However, most businesses will have some reportable assets like furniture, and basic office equipment. If you have received a waiver letter and you have not added property that would cause the total value to exceed $25,000, you are not required to file a return. If the location of your business has changed, or if there has been a change in ownership, you must file a return.

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If I am no longer in business, should I still file the return?

Yes, if you were operating your business on January 1, you must file a return for that year. Then notify the Property Appraiser’s office, in writing, that you have closed, or sold your business. Include the date that the business was closed or sold, and the name and address of the new owner, if any. Our Forms Download page includes a simple Business Status form that you may fill out and mail in. If you receive a blank return in the mail and you were not operating your business on January 1, indicate on the return the date you went out of business and the manner in which you disposed of your business assets. Sign, date, and mail the return back to this office by April 1.

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Are Tangible Personal Property and Real Estate taxed at the same rate?

Yes, both are taxed at the same millage rates if they are in the same taxing jurisdictions.

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What if I have old equipment that has been fully depreciated and written off the books?

Whether fully depreciated in your accounting records or not, if you are required to file, all property still in use or in your possession should be reported.

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Do I have to report assets that I lease, loan, rent, borrow or assets provided for in the rent?

Yes, there is an area on the return specifically for those assets. Although the assets are assessed to the owner, they must be listed for informational purposes.

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Is there a minimum value that I do not have to report?

No. If you are required to file there is no minimum value. A tangible return must be filed on all assets by April 1. If, however, the taxes amount to less than $5.00, you will not receive a tax bill.

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Are there deadlines and penalties?

The deadline for filing a timely return is April 1. After April 1, Florida Statutes 193.072 provide that penalties be applied at 5% per month that the return is late, up to 25%. A 15% penalty is required for unreported property, and a 25% penalty if no return is filed.

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What if I buy or sell an existing business during the year; who is responsible for the taxes?

The owner of record on January 1 is responsible. However, if the taxes are not paid, the tax collector will seize and sell enough of the purchased property to satisfy the tax lien. Most title companies do not address the tangible assets of a business. You should consult your attorney or closing agent to avoid problems in this area.

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Is my mobile home considered real or tangible personal property?

If you own both the land and the mobile home, it is considered real property. If you do not own the land but do own the mobile home, you are required to purchase a mobile home (MH) decal for your mobile home. This MH decal replaces taxes. Any attachments such as porches, carports, additions, and sheds which are added to the mobile home with a MH decal would be considered personal property. IF no MH decal is purchased for the mobile home, both the mobile home and the attachments are considered personal property. If a mobile home with no decals is discovered on a parcel of land, it will be assumed to be owned by the land owner, and will be considered real property. Normally, you do not need to file an annual personal property return for your mobile home.

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What is an office or field review assessment?

When a tax return is not filed by April 1, we are required to place an assessment on the property. This assessment represents an estimate based on the value of businesses with similar equipment and assets. Being assessed in this manner does not alleviate your responsibility to file an accurate return nor abate penalties.

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What if I don't agree with the assessed value that appears on the notice of proposed property taxes that I receive in August of each year?

Call this office or come in and discuss the matter with us. If you have evidence that the appraised value is more that the actual value in use of your property, we will welcome the opportunity to review all the pertinent facts. If after talking with us, you still disagree with the assessed value, you may file a petition to be heard by the Value Adjustment Board. However, in order to be heard by the Value Adjustment Board, you must file a return.

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Must an exempt organization file a Return?

Yes, Florida Statute 193.052 requires that all personal property be reported each year to the Property Appraiser’s Office. Although an ad valorem tax exemption application is submitted by March 1, and all qualifications are met under Chapter 196 of the Florida Statutes, the Property Appraiser must still determine a value of the assets. You should remember to include all leased equipment in the appropriate section of the return.

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Can I obtain an extension for filing my Tangible Personal Property Tax Return?

Yes. Florida Statue 193.063 provides that an extension will be granted up to 30 days. The request must be made before the regular due date of the return. A request for extension must include the name of the taxable entity and the tax identification number of the taxable entity. If the tax ID is unavailable, provide the physical address of the business.

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