All or Nothing: Appeals Dismissed for Failure to Challenge Overall Assessment by Tenant

by: Anthony F. Della Pelle
20 Nov 2013

Plaintiff/Tenant Brunswick Hills Racquet Club timely filed tax appeals for tax years 2011, 2012, and 2013.  East Brunswick Township moved to dismiss all years under appeal after plaintiff conceded that it was not contesting the total assessed value of the shopping mall where it was located, but was instead only challenging the values allocated to its specific building as part of the overall assessed value.  The Tax Court granted defendant’s motion to dismiss plaintiff’s complaints for the pending tax years because plaintiff was not an aggrieved taxpayer for purposes of N.J.S.A. 54:3-21, and that plaintiff’s complaints should be dismissed as failing to state a claim for which relief could be granted.  Apparently, the Tax Court concluded that the appeal was an “all or nothing” venture.

For the Tax Court to have jurisdiction over a tax appeal under N.J.S.A. 54:3-21, a complaint must be filed by a “taxpayer feeling aggrieved by the assessed valuation”.  Under New Jersey law, a tenant is permitted to file a tax appeal on property occupied by the tenant to challenge the overall assessed value of the property.

A copy of the Tax Court’s unpublished opinion in Brunswick Hills Racquet Club v. East Brunswick Twp., (October 2, 2013), can be found here.

For more on landlord-tenant issues in tax appeal cases, please see the following blog posts:

Wegman’s Ducks Landlord’s Attorneys’ Fee Claim Following Successful Tax Appeal

Court Confirms Tenant’s Right To Control Tax Appeal and to Refund

Retail Landlord Prevails on Right to Control Tax Appeal

Tenant Entitled to Tax Refund, But No More

No Landlord-Tenant Relationship Means No Dismissal Under Chapter 91