Caution: Appealing to the Ohio Board of Tax Appeals

Again and again, we see taxpayers lose their right to appeal assessments issued by the Ohio Department of Taxation due to clerical and administrative errors.  The requirements to perfect an appeal to the Ohio Board of Tax Appeals (BTA) are “finicky” to say the least, and taxpayers are not afforded any leniency in this regard.  The Ohio Supreme Court has stated that “Manifestly, strict compliance with the tax laws of this state is essential to vest jurisdiction upon the [BTA].”

Just last month, the BTA dismissed a case because the notice of appeal was sent to the BTA only, not the Tax Commissioner, and the notice was directed “To whom it may concern”, not the Tax Commissioner.  The appeal was dismissed due to the failure to comply with the statutory requirement that a notice of appeal be filed with BTA and the Tax Commissioner.  The BTA could not even consider the merits of the taxpayer’s appeal due to this seemingly trivial requirement.  This is a prime example of why it is imperative to retain an attorney familiar with Ohio’s state tax laws to handle matters before the Ohio Tax Commissioner and Board of Tax Appeals. As a taxpayer, you are entitled to certain rights — be sure not to waste your rights.

Click here for a copy of the BTA decision referenced above: Austintown Ambulatory v. Levin, B.T.A. No. 2009-M-696 (November 10, 2009).