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TO AMEND SECTION 12-45-75, AS AMENDED, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO THE AUTHORITY OF A COUNTY BY ORDINANCE TO ALLOW QUARTERLY OR MONTHLY INSTALLMENT PAYMENT OF TAXES ON REAL PROPERTY, SO AS TO REQUIRE THE PAYMENT OF ESTIMATED PROPERTY TAXES ON REAL PROPERTY IN INSTALLMENTS OF TWENTY-FIVE PERCENT EACH DUE ON APRIL 15, JUNE 15, AND SEPTEMBER 15 OF EACH YEAR, TO DEFINE ESTIMATED PROPERTY TAX LIABILITY, TO PROVIDE THAT THE TOTAL OF ESTIMATED PROPERTY TAXES PAID IS A CREDIT AGAINST THE TOTAL PROPERTY DUE ON THE PROPERTY, TO PROVIDE FOR INTEREST ON UNDERPAYMENTS AND OVERPAYMENTS OF ESTIMATED PROPERTY TAX, TO REQUIRE PROPERTY TAX NOTICES TO CONTAIN A CALCULATION OF AN ESTIMATED PROPERTY TAX LIABILITY AND RETURN ENVELOPES FOR PAYING THE ESTIMATED PROPERTY TAX, AND TO PROVIDE THAT THE PAYMENT OF ESTIMATED PROPERTY TAXES AND THE CREDIT ALLOWED AGAINST PROPERTY TAXES FOR ESTIMATED PROPERTY TAXES DOES NOT ALTER THE DUE DATE, PENALTY SCHEDULE, AND ENFORCED COLLECTION OF PROPERTY TAXES EXCEPT WITH RESPECT TO INTEREST ADDED TO PROPERTY TAX FOR UNDERPAYMENT OF ESTIMATED PROPERTY TAX.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Section 12-45-75 of the 1976 Code, as last amended by Act 136 of 2005, is further amended to read:
"Section 12-45-75. (A)
(1) The governing body of a county may by ordinance allow a taxpayer to elect to pay all ad valorem taxes on real property located in the county in quarterly or monthly installments. An installment election is not allowed for taxes paid through an escrow account.
(2) The ordinance must specify the installment due dates and it may provide for installments due and payable before January fifteenth, but the final installment due date must be January fifteenth. The ordinance may provide for a service charge of not more than two dollars on installment payments. For purposes of payment and collection, these service charges are deemed property taxes. The ordinance may not provide penalties for late installments. For each parcel of taxable real property on which there is an estimated property tax liability, there is imposed an estimated property tax which is due and payable as provided in this section.
The governing body of a county may by ordinance provide a discount in all ad valorem taxes on real property located in the county paid in advance of the January fifteenth due date. The ordinance may provide a range of discounts that vary according to the length of the prepayment period. An estimated property tax liability exists in an amount equal to the total property tax due on the parcel for the previous property tax year, if that amount, after applying all applicable credits, except the credit allowed by this section, exceeds five-hundred dollars. An amount equal to twenty-five percent of the estimated property tax liability must be paid to the county treasurer in each of three installments according to the following schedule:
In the case of the
following estimates: The due date is:
First April 15
Second June 15
Third September 15.
(C) Interest at the rate provided in Section 12-54-25 must be added to underpayments of estimated tax due running from the due date of the installment to the earlier of:
(1) the final due date for property taxes as provided in Section 12-45-70; or
(2) with respect to any portion of the underpayment, the date on which such portion is paid.
Interest on underpayments is deemed property tax for all purposes of collection and enforcement.
(D) Estimated property taxes paid during a property tax year are a credit against the total property tax due on the real property for the property tax year. Estimated property taxes paid during a property tax year must be credited to the accounts of property taxing entities in the county in the same proportion that millage was imposed by such entities in the previous tax year with the necessary adjustments made to reflect current tax year millage impositions when property taxes for the current year are paid.
(E) If the credit allowed for estimated property tax paid during the property tax year results in an overpayment of property tax, the overpayment must be refunded to the taxpayer together with interest at the rate provided in Section 12-54-25 running from the later of the due date of the installment resulting in the overpayment, without regard to additional amounts paid, or the actual date the overpayment was received by the county treasurer, to the date the refund is issued.
(F) Every tax notice for real property must contain a calculation of any estimated property tax due and a payment schedule and return envelopes for these payments.
(G) The payment of estimated property tax as provided in this section and the credit allowed arising from these payments in no way alters the due date, penalty schedule, and enforced collection of property taxes as provided by law, except for the inclusion in the total of property tax due the interest on underpayments imposed pursuant to subsection (C) of this section."
SECTION 2. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor and applies for real property tax years beginning after 2006.
This web page was last updated on Tuesday, June 23, 2009 at 2:35 P.M.