Articles Posted in Real Estate & Property Law

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The amendment to Ohio Rev. Code 5713.03 enacted in 2012 (H.B. 487) applied to the circumstances of this case and required a remand to the Board of Tax Appeals (BTA) for further consideration. At issue here was a 2013 real property valuation for a lease-encumbered property that had been the subject of recent arm’s-length sales. The Supreme Court held that the H.B. 487 amendment required the BTA to determine the value of the subject property’s unencumbered fee-simple estate. Because the BTA did not properly consider appraisal evidence that purported to explain why the subject property’s recent sale price did not reflect the value of the unencumbered fee-simple estate, the court vacated the BTA’s decision and remanded the case for the BTA to address and weigh the evidence before it. View "Terraza 8, LLC v. Franklin County Board of Revision" on Justia Law

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West Carrollton City Schools Board of Education (BOE) appealed the decision of the Board of Tax Appeals (BTA) that retained the auditor’s update-year valuation of $4,716,690 for 2011 for the two contiguous parcels of property at issue in this case. Specifically, the BOE argued, inter alia, that the BTA acted unreasonably and unlawfully by refusing either to rely on the land-sale price and actual-cost evidence to value to the property. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) Ohio Rev. Code barred the direct use of the land-sale price in Carmax Auto Superstores, Inc.’s 2008 acquisition of the property because Carmax spent more than $7 million on subsequently added improvements; and (2) neither the 2008 land-sale price nor the actual construction costs affirmatively negated the auditor’s valuation, and therefore, the BTA acquired no duty to perform an independent valuation. View "West Carrollton City Schools Board of Education v. Montgomery County Board of Revision" on Justia Law

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The Board of Tax Appeals (BTA) upheld the tax commissioner’s denial of a property tax exemption for Appellant’s four dialysis-service centers for tax year 2007 and the denial of Appellant’s requested remission of the property taxes it paid for those facilities for tax year 2006. The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the BTA as to tax year 2006 and reversed it as to tax year 2007, holding that remission was properly denied for tax year 2006, but for tax year 2007, Appellant’s use of space at the four centers qualified for exemption. Because some of the space listed in the facilities was leased to private physicians, the properties should be split-listed, with a portion taxable and the dialysis-service facilities exempt. View "Dialysis Centers of Dayton, LLC v. Testa" on Justia Law

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At issue was a lessor’s right to terminate an oil and gas lease when a lessee fails to make minimum annual rental or royalty payments. The trial court granted summary judgment in favor of the lessors in this case and ordered forfeiture of the lease at issue, declaring that the lease had terminated under its own terms because the lessees had failed to a minimum annual rental of $5,500 under the lease and that the lease was void as against public policy. The court of appeals reversed. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the provision in the lease requiring the lessee to pay $5,500 annually did not invoke the termination provision in the unrelated delay-rental clause; and (2) the lease did not qualify as a no-term, perpetual lease, and therefore, the lease was not void as against public policy. View "Bohlen v. Anadarko E&P Onshore, LLC" on Justia Law

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Appellant filed a complaint challenging the $148,800 valuation on certain property found by the fiscal officer for tax year 2012. The Cuyahoga County Board of Revision (BOR) reduced the property value to $60,000. Appellant appealed, seeking a further reduction to $25,000. The Board of Tax Appeals (BTA) affirmed and adopted the BOR’s reduced valuation. On appeal, Appellant contended that he shifted the burden of proof to the county and the county had not met its burden, and that the record negated the fiscal officer’s original assessment. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the BTA reasonably and lawfully retained the BOR’s value under the circumstances. View "Moskowitz v. Cuyahoga County Board of Revision" on Justia Law

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The owner of property consisting of several residential parcels that were part of a government-subsidized, low-income housing project, challenged the valuations of the property for tax years 2008, 2009, and 2010. The Franklin County Board of Revision (BOR) adopted the appraisal presented by the property owner. The Board of Tax Appeals (BTA) reversed and reinstated the county auditor’s valuations. The Supreme Court held that the BTA’s rejection of the owner’s appraisal was based upon an erroneous interpretation of Woda Ivy Glen Ltd. Partnership v. Fayette County Bd. of Revision, 902 N.E.2d 984, the proper legal analysis for the type of property at issue in this case. In so holding, the court reversed the BTA’s decision as to its 2009 and 2010 valuations and reinstated the BOR’s valuation for those years. View "Columbus City Schools Board of Education v. Franklin County Board of Revision" on Justia Law

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The former owner of the subject property at issue in this case filed a valuation complaint in 2006 seeking to reduce the property’s tax-year-2005 value. The Franklin County Board of Revision (BOR) lowered the value but failed to send that notice to the Groveport Madison Local Schools Board of Education (BOE) at the time. When no appeal was timely filed, a refund was issued to a prior owner, and the case was closed. NSCO International Investment, LLC subsequently acquired the property. More than four years later, the BOE appealed, citing its lack of notice as the reason for its delay. The BOR made no effort to notify NSCO of the appeal. The Board of Tax Appeals (BTA) reinstated the auditor’s valuation. Two years after the BTA decision, NSCO asked the BTA to vacate its decision and schedule a new hearing because it had not been given notice or an opportunity to be heard. the BTA denied NSCO’s motion to vacate. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the BTA lacked jurisdiction to vacate its decision after the time to appeal that decision had passed; and (2) the BTA complied with Ohio Rev. Code 5717.03(B) by sending a copy of its decision to NSCO’s tax mailing address. View "Groveport Madison Local Schools Bd. of Education v. Franklin County Board of Revision" on Justia Law

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At issue in these three consolidated appeals was whether the Board of Tax Appeals (BTA) acted reasonably and lawfully in valuing properties based on recent arm’s-length-sale prices. The first case involved a residential property owned by Gale Dauch, and the other two cases involved residential properties owned by Dauch in his personal capacity. Dauch challenged the Erie County auditor’s valuation for tax year 2013, asserting that his recent arm’s-length purchase established a lower true value. The Board of Revision retained the valuations. The BTA reversed and valued the properties according to the sale prices. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that, based on Lunn v. Lorain County Board of Revision, the BTA’s findings that the sales were arm’s length in nature were reasonable and lawful. View "Dauch v. Erie County Board of Revision" on Justia Law

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At issue in this case were the proper valuations for tax year 2008 of two government-subsidized housing complexes in Franklin County. For each of the two properties, the property owner filed a complaint challenging the auditor’s 2008 valuations. The Franklin County Board of Revision (BOR) rejected the appraisal evidence the property owner presented in support of a claimed reduction and adopted the auditor’s original valuation. The Board of Tax Appeals (BTA) reversed and adopted the property owners’ appraisal valuations. The South-Western City Schools Board of Education (BOE) appealed. The Supreme Court vacated the decision of the BTA and remanded for further proceedings, holding that the BTA erred by failing to give any consideration to the contravening evidence presented by the BOE at the BTA hearing. View "Lutheran Social Services of Central Ohio Village Housing, Inc. v. Franklin County Board of Revision" on Justia Law

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David Emerson owned two adjoining parcels of real property in Erie County. The Erie County auditor’s aggregate valuation of the two parcels for tax year 2011 was $328,270. Emerson challenged the valuations, arguing that his 2009 purchase of the parcels established lower true values because it was a recent arm’s-length transaction. The Erie County Board of Revision (BOR) retained the auditor’s valuation. On appeal, the Board of Tax Appeals (BTA) reversed the BOR’s decision and valued the property at $180,000 according to the sale price. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) Emerson demonstrated a recent arm’s-length sale; and (2) the county cannot rebut the sale price with an appraisal. View "Emerson v. Erie County Board of Revision" on Justia Law