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Flawed Highest and Best Use Determination Cripples Taxpayer’s Case

by: Daniel Kim
5 Sep 2017
A valuation trial of a retail bank branch was recently heard before the Tax Court.  Beneficial Mutual Savings Bank v. Twp. of Mount Laurel involved a one-story retail bank branch that is owner-occupied.  The history of the subject property was relevant to plaintiff’s valuation analysis.   Approximately 20 years ago, Rt. 38 was widened from four lanes... Read More

Testimony on Reasonable Probability of Zoning Change Not Limited to Real Estate Appraisers

by: Daniel Kim
18 Aug 2017
In a recent dispute before the Tax Court, the court addressed the issue of whether only a real estate appraiser may offer testimony as to the reasonable probability of a change in zoning of the subject property as of the relevant valuation dates.  In Ciba Specialty Chemicals Corp. v. Twp. of Toms River, the taxpayer... Read More

Newark Property Owner Loses Date of Value Argument

by: Joseph Grather
10 Aug 2017
On August 2, 2017, the Appellate Division affirmed several Law Division orders arising out of a long-running dispute between the County of Essex and the owners of property located in the City of Newark.  The appellate court affirmed trial court orders; 1) setting the date of value, 2) denying reconsideration thereof, and 3) memorializing a... Read More

Denial of Veteran’s Tax Exemption Upheld on Appeal

by: Daniel Kim
19 Jul 2017
On or about March 21,  2016, the Tax Court issued a ruling in Fisher v. Millville which addressed a taxpayer’s application for disabled veteran’s property tax exemption pursuant to N.J.S.A. 54:4-3.30.  The issue in the case was whether plaintiff’s disability satisfied the statutory criteria for a veteran’s property tax exemption.  The Tax Court denied plaintiff’s application for an... Read More

Even in Bankruptcy, Prior Owner’s Failure to Respond to Ch. 91 Request Not Excused

by: Daniel Kim
29 Jun 2017
The Tax Court once again dismissed an appeal for taxpayer’s failure to provide income and expense information pursuant to the municipality’s Ch. 91 request.  In 975 Holdings, LLC v. Egg Harbor City, the prior owner of the subject property had filed for bankruptcy under Chapter 11 and plaintiff acquired the subject property in a bankruptcy... Read More

SCOTUS Rejects Bright-Line Rule, Adopts a Multifactor Standard in Relevant Parcel Analysis

by: Daniel Kim
27 Jun 2017
In the context of regulatory takings, issues often arise in identifying what the actual property consists of before the taking.  Because the test for regulatory takings require the courts to compare the value that has been taken from the property with the value that remains in the property, one of the critical components in the... Read More

State Law Held to Apply in Federal Court Pipeline Taking

by: Anthony F. Della Pelle
19 Jun 2017
A Florida Federal District Court judge court recently held that Florida’s state eminent domain laws should be applied to a taking by a private pipeline company which relied upon the Natural Gas Act, federal law which allows private companies to use eminent domain in the federal courts “in matters relating to the transportation of natural gas... Read More

Omitted Assessment Tossed — “Error” in Setting Value Not an Erroneous Omission

by: Richard De Angelis
8 Jun 2017
New Jersey’s omitted assessment law allows a municipal tax assessor to go back one year in the event an assessment on a property was inadvertently omitted from the tax rolls (Yes, it does happen. I once had a client that owned an office building that was assessed at over $4 million for which the assessment was simply... Read More

“Hotel for Pets” Is Deemed Not Income-Producing

by: Daniel Kim
1 Jun 2017
The Township had a bone to pick with plaintiffs who filed appeals of a property that consisted of a pet boarding kennel.  In Pittius v. Old Bridge Twp., the subject property consisted of one residential improvement and another improvement which consisted of a boarding kennel for animals. The property is classified as a 4A (commercial)... Read More

Property Owner’s Second Bite at the Apple Not So Tasty as the First

by: Joseph Grather
15 May 2017
A New Jersey appellate court just affirmed the denial of property owner’s challenge to a condemnation premised on a failure of pre-complaint bona fide negotiations. Montclair v Cerino 2017 a0753-15. The Township of Montclair had previously commenced a condemnation action to acquire a property along Valley Road that was used by the property owner to store... Read More