SENATE
HOUSE
JOINT
BILL STATUS
STATE LAW
REPORTS
EDUCATIONAL
CONTACT
home
home

Introduced Version House Bill 2589 History

   |  Email
Key: Green = existing Code. Red = new code to be enacted
H. B. 2589


(By Delegates Fleischauer and Staton)

[Introduced February 21, 1995; referred to the

Committee on the Judiciary.]





A BILL to amend and reenact sections two and three, article six-b, chapter eleven of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, relating to the homestead exemption for illness applying to homeowners absent due to illness.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That sections two and three, article six-b, chapter eleven of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, be amended and reenacted all to read as follows:
ARTICLE 6B. HOMESTEAD PROPERTY TAX EXEMPTION.
§11-6B-2. Definitions.

For purposes of this article, the term:
(1) "Assessed value" means the value of property as determined under article three of this chapter.
(2) "Claimant" means a person who is age sixty-five or older or who is certified as being permanently and totally disabled, and who owns a homestead that is used and occupied by the owner thereof exclusively for residential purposes.
(3) "Homestead" means a single family residential house, including a mobile or manufactured or modular home, and the land surrounding such structure; or a mobile or manufactured or modular home regardless of whether the land upon which such mobile or manufactured or modular home is situated is owned or leased.
(4) "Owner" means the person who is possessed of the homestead, whether in fee or for life. A person seized or entitled in fee subject to a mortgage or deed of trust shall be deemed the owner. A person who has an equitable estate of freehold, or is a purchaser of a freehold estate who is in possession before transfer of legal title shall also be deemed the owner. Personal property mortgaged or pledged shall, for the purpose of taxation, be deemed the property of the party in possession.
(5) "Permanently and totally disabled" means a person who is unable to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental condition which can be expected to result in death or which has lasted or can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than twelve months.
(6) "Sixty-five years of age or older" includes a person who attains the age of sixty-five on or before the thirtieth day of June following the July first assessment day.
(7) "Used and occupied exclusively for residential purposes" means that the property is used as an abode, dwelling or habitat for more than six consecutive months of the calendar year prior to the date of application by the owner thereof; and that the property is used only as an abode, dwelling or habitat to the exclusion of any commercial use: Provided, That failure to satisfy this six-month period shall not prevent allowance of a homestead exemption to a former resident in accordance with section three of this article.
(8) "Tax year" means the calendar year following the July first assessment day.
(9) "Resident of this state" means an individual who is domiciled in this state for more than six months of the calendar year. (10) "Affidavit qualification" means an individual unable to be present in his or her home due to health reasons but despite such absence maintains the home as his or her primary domicile who provides to the assessor of his or her county an affidavit for continued exemption despite unavoidable physical absence as described herein.
§11-6B-3. Twenty thousand dollar homestead exemption allowed.

(a) General. -- An exemption from ad valorem property taxes shall be allowed for the first twenty thousand dollars of assessed value of a homestead that is used and occupied by the owner thereof exclusively for residential purposes, when such owner demonstrates affidavit qualification, when such owner is sixty-five years of age or older or is certified as being permanently and totally disabled provided the owner has been or will be a resident of the state of West Virginia for the two consecutive calendar years preceding the tax year to which the homestead exemption relates: Provided, That an owner who receives a similar exemption for a homestead in another state is ineligible for the exemption provided by this section. The owner's application for exemption shall be accompanied by a sworn affidavit stating that such owner is not receiving a similar exemption in another state: Provided, however, That when a resident of West Virginia establishes residency in another state or country and subsequently returns and reestablishes residency in West Virginia within a period of five years, such resident may be allowed a homestead exemption without satisfying the requirement of two years consecutive residency if such person was a resident of this state for two calendar years out of the ten calendar years immediately preceding the tax year for which the homestead exemption is sought. Proof of residency includes, but is not limited to, the owner's voter's registration card issued in this state or a motor vehicle registration card issued in this state. Additionally, when a person is a resident of this state at the time such person enters upon active duty in the military service of this country and throughout such service maintains this state as his or her state of residence, and upon retirement from the military service, or earlier separation due to a permanent and total physical or mental disability, such person returns to this state and purchases a homestead, such person is deemed to satisfy the residency test required by this section and shall be allowed a homestead exemption under this section if such person is otherwise eligible for a homestead exemption under this article; and the tax commissioner may specify, by regulation promulgated under chapter twenty-nine-a of this code, what constitutes acceptable proof of these facts. Only one exemption shall be allowed for each homestead used and occupied exclusively for residential purposes by the owner thereof, regardless of the number of qualified owners residing therein.
(b) Attachment of exemption. -- This exemption shall attach to the homestead occupied by the qualified owner on the July first assessment date and shall be applicable to taxes for the following tax year. An exemption shall not be transferred to another homestead until the following July first. If the homestead of an owner qualified under this article is transferred by deed, will or otherwise, the twenty thousand dollar exemption shall be removed from the property on the next July first assessment date unless the new owner qualifies for the exemption.
(c) Construction. -- The residency requirement specified in subsection (a) is enacted pursuant to the Legislature's authority to prescribe by general law requirements, limitations and conditions for the homestead exemption, as set forth in section one-b, article ten of the constitution of this state. Should the supreme court of appeals or a federal court of competent jurisdiction determine that this residency requirement violates federal law in a decision that becomes final, this section shall then be construed and applied, beginning with the July first assessment day immediately following the date the decision became final, as if the residency requirement had not been enacted, thereby preserving the availability of the homestead exemption and the fiscal integrity of local government levying bodies.




NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to provide that homeowners who absence themselves from their domicile for health reasons may still claim a homestead exemption for illness upon demonstrating the home remains his or her primary domicile.

Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.
This Web site is maintained by the West Virginia Legislature's Office of Reference & Information.  |  Terms of Use  |   Web Administrator   |   © 2021 West Virginia Legislature **


X

Print On Demand

Name:
Email:
Phone:

Print