TAX PAYMENT INFORMATION FAQ
Q: What if I never received a tax bill?
A: Connecticut General Statutes (CGS) Section 12-130 states “…failure to send out any… tax bill shall not invalidate the tax....” You are not exempt from payment of all taxes and all interest charges. If you do not receive a bill for which you are responsible, call the Tax Collectors Office at (860) 757-9630 and request a copy. You may also download the Tax Payment General Information form and fax your inquiry to the Tax Collector's Office at (860) 722-6085.
Q: Do I need to save my receipts?
A: Yes. Save your receipts for 15 years, which is the length of time during which municipal taxes are collectible. Receipts will be issued for payments made in person at the Tax Office window. You must retain your own payment information for purposes of claiming tax credits and filling out federal and state income tax forms. Requests for information about payments made in prior fiscal years must be in writing; a fee is charged for research. Please plan ahead, as research will not be done while you wait.
Q: What do I own that is subject to taxes?
A: Three types of property are assessed and subject to taxes:
Real Estate: Any land or buildings are considered real estate.
Q: How is the tax rate established?
Motor Vehicle: Registered motorized or non-motorized vehicles, (including cars, trucks, trailers and motorcycles) are considered motor vehicles for tax purposes.
Personal Property: Personal property is a general category including business equipment, machinery, furniture and fixtures either owned or leased by business. Unregistered motor vehicles are also taxed as personal property.
The property tax rate is expressed in mills, or thousandths of a dollar. A tax
rate (mill rate) of 68.34 mills
is equivalent to $68.34 in taxes per $1,000 of net assessed value. The City of
Hartford sets the mill rates annually in May/ June as part of the municipal
Q: When are taxes due?
A: Taxes are due July 1st and January 1st. If a tax bill is $100 or less, the full amount is due on July 1st.
Q: What is the best way to pay my tax bill?
A: The most convenient way to pay is with a check by mail. A return envelope is included with your tax bill. Write the list numbers on your check. Your list numbers are shown on your bill. If you wish to have a receipt returned to you, please send the entire lower portion of your tax bill and a self-addressed, stamped envelope with your payment. We will not mail your receipt if you fail to include a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Mail payments to PO Box 2719, Hartford, CT 06146-2719.
DO NOT INCLUDE CASH. There is a $20 fee that will be applied to your account for checks returned by your Financial Institution for insufficient funds.
Q: Can I pay my motor vehicle delinquent taxes by personal check?
A: If you have delinquent motor vehicle taxes, or are planning to register a vehicle with the Department of Motor Vehicles and require a release from the Tax Collector, you must pay with Cash, Money Order, and/ or Certified Bank Check. If payment is made by Personal check, a release will be issued after ten (10) business days.
Q: My property has a real estate lien. Can I get it released after I pay my taxes?
A: If you want the lien released immediately upon payment, payment must be made by Cash, Money Order or Certified bank check. If payment is made by Personal check, liens will not be released for ten (10) business days.
Q: May I pay my taxes with a credit or debit card?
A: The City of Hartford does accept Master Card ONLY at the Tax Office Window. For those taxpayers who choose to pay with Master Card there is a 2.50% convenience fee charged. This fee does not go to the City but to the bank for the transaction processing costs.
Q: Can I make partial payments for taxes?
A: Partial payments are accepted. Interest is charged at the statutory rate (currently 1 ½ % per month/ 18% per year) from the due date. Taxes must be paid in full for lien releases or for motor vehicle registration clearance. If the amount of delinquent taxes owed is greater than $5000, a formal agreement must be signed with an authorized member of the Tax Collector’s staff.
Q: Are there long lines at City Hall?
A: Yes, during the months of July and January. You should expect to wait in line if you plan to pay in person during this period. Lines are longest at lunchtime, and as the last day to pay approaches. When paying in person, bring your tax bill with you, and write your list numbers on your check for faster service. If you want to avoid waiting in line, consider paying your bill by mail. You may also “drop off” payments at the Tax Collector’s Office, if the check is for the exact amount of the taxes.
Q: What are the office hours of the Tax Collector?
A: The Tax Collector's Office, located on the first floor of Hartford City Hall, 550 Main Street, Room 106, is open Monday through Friday, 8:15 am. – 4:45 pm.
Q: What happens if I pay late?
A: Taxes are due in two installments for each fiscal year. You have a one-month “grace” period in which to pay without penalty, either in person or by mail. The first payment is due on July 1st and must be paid by August 1st to avoid interest charges. The second installment is due on January 1st and must be paid by February 1st to avoid interest charges. In accordance with CGS 12-146, past due payments are subject to interest at the rate of one and one half percent (1 ½) per month from the due date of the tax (July 1). Payments made on or after Aug. 2, including payments postmarked Aug. 2 and later are past due and will incur 3% interest, representing two months' delinquency (July & August). The city is required by law to accept the postmark as the date of payment. There is a $2.00 minimum interest charge per account.
Q: Can the interest on my tax bill be waived?
A: No. The Tax Collector does not have the authority to waive interest and can make NO EXCEPTIONS. (CGS 12-146) Property owners are responsible to pay taxes when due.
Q: My tax bill shows “back taxes due” and I am being charged interest and other fees. What does that mean?
A: According to our records, there are past due taxes in your Name, or on the parcel of property in question. Call (860) 757-9630 with questions. Delinquent taxes and interest must be paid in full before payment on current bills can be accepted. Any payment you send in toward current taxes will be applied to outstanding back taxes.
Q: My real estate tax bill should be paid by my bank or mortgage company; I received the tax bill in the mail directly from the City. What should I do?
A: Immediately, contact the bank / mortgage company for instructions of where to send the tax bill. (The address may be printed in your mortgage payment coupon book.) After you have the information, make a copy of your bill, circle the dollar amount of the real estate payment due, write your loan number on it, and immediately forward it to your escrow agent or mortgage company. Additional instructions may be available on the web site of your bank/mortgage company.
Q: I recently bought (or sold) a house in Hartford, and I have a question about what I owe. What should I do?
A: The property tax bills due in July will reflect ownership changes recorded through early May. If you recently purchased property in Hartford, and have not received a real estate tax bill, call the Tax Collector’s Office immediately at (860) 757-9630, or fax to (860) 722-6085, to request a copy. Check with the Assessor’s Office to ensure their records have been updated. Payment must be made by August 1, whether or not a bill has been received! If you recently sold property in Hartford, and received a tax bill for the property, contact the Assessor’s Office at (860) 757-9630, or by fax (860) 722-6142.
Q: If I am being improperly billed for a motor vehicle. What should I do?
A: Contact the Assessor's Office at (860) 757-9630, or by fax at (860) 722-6142. DO NOT IGNORE YOUR BILL!
If any of these situations applies to you, you may be entitled to a credit:
If your vehicle has been sold, and plates returned to DMV;
Stolen and not recovered;
Declared a total loss;
If you have moved from Hartford or moved from Connecticut.
Contact the Assessor’s Office for information regarding the acceptable forms of proof for the issuance of a credit. Two forms of written proof are required. You must apply for the credit within a limited time, so do not delay!
Q: I need to register my car. What do I do?
A: If you owe delinquent property taxes on any vehicle in your name, you may not renew any registrations at the Department of Motor Vehicles without paying your taxes first. All past due taxes in your name must be paid in full by cash, cashier's check or money order for an immediate clearance (stamp or release form). For payments made by personal check, clearance will be given after ten (10) business days.
Q: I have moved. What is my tax jurisdiction for motor vehicle taxes?
A: Your tax town is your town of residency as of October 1. If you moved from Hartford after October 1, but still resided in Connecticut, you must pay vehicle taxes to Hartford. Municipalities within Connecticut do not apportion motor vehicle tax bills for portions of a tax year. If you register the vehicle in another state, contact the Assessor's Office. If you move, you must notify the Department of Motor Vehicles of your new address within 48 hours. You should request a change of address on your driver's license and on your vehicle registration(s).
Q: I recently replaced a vehicle, and received a tax bill on the old vehicle. Do I have to pay it?
A: Yes. If you replaced one vehicle with another, and used the same license plates, you must pay on the “old” vehicle in July. In December, you will receive a pro-rated Supplemental motor vehicle tax bill, payable by February 1 for the new vehicle. This bill will reflect a credit for the amount you should have paid in July on the old vehicle. You will receive this credit without having to apply for it. However, you must have paid the entire amount due on the old vehicle in July. If you obtained new license plates for the new vehicle, you must apply for a credit. Contact the Assessors Office at (860) 757-9630 or by fax at (860) 722-6142.
Q: What is a "supplemental" motor vehicle tax bill?
A: If you newly registered a motor vehicle after October 1, (first time registration), you will receive a pro-rated tax bill in December, due on January 1, payable by February 1. This "supplemental" bill will reflect the time from the month the vehicle was first registered, through August 31. If you replaced a vehicle and used the same plates to register the replacement vehicle, see answer above.
Q: Am I eligible for any exemptions?
A: You may be eligible. The exemption categories include Veteran; Spouse of a deceased Veteran; Blind; Totally Disabled; Motor Vehicle of a Serviceman or Servicewoman (active duty); Farmers / Merchants; and Forest, Farm and Open Space. For details about these exemptions, or if you think you may qualify, contact the Assessor’s Office at (860) 757-9630. Veterans’ & other exemptions, if any, appear in the total exemptions (“exempt”) box on your tax bill.
Q: Are there any tax benefits for senior citizens?
A: Yes! If you or your spouse are age 65 or older, permanently reside in Hartford (legal residence), either own your own home, and meet certain income restrictions, you may be eligible for one or more forms of city or state financed property tax credits and / or tax deferral. To inquire about eligibility, or for information about these programs, contact the Assessor's Office at (860) 757-9630. You may also inquire in person at the Assessor’s Office, Room 108 at City Hall. If you are a renter and meet certain income restrictions, you can apply at the Elderly Services Division located at 2 Holcomb Street, First Floor, Hartford; Telephone:(860) 547-1426.
Q: How has the revaluation affected my tax bill?
A: Please contact the Assessor’s Office at (860) 757-9630 for more information.
Tax Collector’s Office 860.757.9630 Telephone
Tax Assessor’s Office 860.757.9630 Telephone
Questions about tax billings, delinquent taxes, amounts paid, interest charged and motor vehicle releases should be directed to the Tax Collector’s Office.
Questions about assessed value, adjustments, exemptions, credits, tax relief programs, motor vehicle credits, revaluation and vehicle adjustments should be directed to the Tax Assessor’s Office.