Saturday, June 2, 2012

C. Fla. County Official: New System For Taking Online Applications For Real Estate Tax Benefits On Homestead Exemption Claims Virtually 'Fraud-Proof'

In Pasco County, Florida, The Pasco Tribune reports:

  • For years, Pasco Property Appraiser Mike Wells resisted the idea of allowing homeowners to file online for a homestead exemption. "Other counties have tried it, and there were always flaws," he said.

  • But Wells, who is running for his fifth term, said his office has developed an online application that is virtually "fraud-proof." The new application system started Thursday.

  • The Property Appraiser's Office reviews 10,000 to 14,000 new homestead exemptions a year. Wells said he hopes the new online application will reduce the amount of office work involved in the reviews. Applicants must fill out personal information, such as the driver's license number, voter identification and Social Security number, and the program will compare the information with state and national databases.

  • "It's completely automated," he said. "The system reviews the input of information online in real time. So if you give the wrong driver's license number, it's going to stop."

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