In an effort to improve the system for all taxpayers, the Kenosha County Treasurer’s Office is making some changes to how it collects delinquent taxes, Treasurer Teri Jacobson announced today.
“We now have the ability in our system to better track people and keep them up to date, and we want to help people get caught up on their back taxes and stay current,” Jacobson said. “Part of that is making sure they’re making regular monthly payments.”
Jacobson said property owners who enter into a payment plan for prior-year taxes will now be required within 15 days to sign and return the payment plan agreement letter to the County Treasurer’s Office, which will formalize their new payment plan.
Those who fail to return the signed letter will forfeit their payment plan and will owe the full amount of back taxes immediately, advancing the process by which the county may take ownership of tax-delinquent properties through tax deed foreclosure. Payment plans will also be forfeited thereafter if payments are not made on time.
Beginning Jan. 1, 2019, the County Treasurer’s Office will require those who are on delinquent-tax payment plans to make all of their current-year tax payments on time, as well. If current-year taxes become delinquent, delinquent-tax payment plans and future payment plan eligibility will be forfeited. All current and prior-year taxes will be owed immediately.
“We don’t want people to fall more delinquent than they already are,” Jacobson said, noting that delinquent taxes are subject to interest and penalties of 1.5 percent, or 18 percent per year.
In the past, the County Treasurer’s Office did not have a formalized mechanism to track the status of delinquent-tax payment plans. The Kenosha County Division of Information Technology recently developed such a system as part of a larger effort to reduce the county’s delinquent-tax rolls.
Property owners should be aware of where to pay their taxes, Jacobson said.
All current-year tax installment payments are made at the Kenosha City Clerk/Treasurer’s Office or the Pleasant Prairie Village Clerk/Treasurer’s Office for properties in those respective communities.
Current-year taxes for properties in all other Kenosha County municipalities are payable to their respective municipal treasurers for the first installment or full payment made before Jan. 31 each year. Second-installment payments, due July 31, are payable to the County Treasurer’s Office.
Prior-year delinquent taxes for all municipalities, including Kenosha and Pleasant Prairie, are payable to the County Treasurer’s Office.
The County Treasurer’s Office accepts tax payments in person or by mail at 1010 56th St., Kenosha, WI 53140, and in person at the front counter in the Kenosha County Center at highways 45 and 50 in Bristol. Payments may also be made by credit card or electronic check. More information is at http://www.kenoshacounty.org/595/Payments.
For more information about the delinquent-tax payment process, please call the Treasurer’s Office at 262-653-2542 or visit http://www.kenoshacounty.org/1976/Delinquent-Taxes.