Tax Relief Programs for Seniors, Permanent Disability, and Disabled Veterans

North Carolina General Statutes provide several programs to provide tax relief for Senior Citizens, Individuals with Permanent Disabilities, and for Disabled Veterans or their surviving spouse.  All of these programs use a common application and some individuals may qualify for more than one program. Additional forms are required for certification of disability along with the common application.

The programs have different requirements and provide differing levels of relief. Individuals qualifying for more than one of these programs will be placed in the one which provides the greatest level of tax relief. Some programs require only a one-time application, while others require annual application. One of the program defers taxes which may have to be repaid if disqualified, while the others do not.

Property Tax Exclusion for Senior Citizens or Permanently Disabled Citizens


North Carolina excludes from property taxes a portion of the appraised value of a permanent residence owned and occupied by North Carolina residents who are at least 65 years of age OR who are certified as totally and permanently disabled, AND whose income does not exceed $29,500. (Income limit for 2016 -- limit is adjusted annually based on any cost of living adjustments to Social Security Benefits)

The amount of the appraised value of the residence that may be excluded from taxation is the greater of $25,000 or 50% of the appraised value of the residence. Income means all monies received from every source other than gifts or inheritances received from a spouse, lineal ancestor, or lineal descendant.

If you did not receive the exclusion last year, but are now eligible, you may obtain an application from the Tax Assessor’s Office or below under Related Documents. Those 65 or older need to complete Form AV-9 (Application for Property Tax Relief) only, others must also file Form AV-9A (Disability Certification) completed by a medical professional authorized to do so. This is a one-time application. It must be filed with the Tax Assessor's Office by June 1.

If you received this exclusion last year, you do not need to apply again unless you have changed your permanent residence or your income has increased to exceed the program limit. If you received the exclusion last year but the property no longer qualifies for any reason, please notify the assessor. Failure to notify the assessor that the property no longer qualifies for the exclusion may cause the property to be subject to discovery with penalties and interest pursuant to G.S. 105-312

Senior Citizens / Permanently Disabled Citizens - Circuit Breaker Deferment

 
North Carolina defers a portion of the property taxes on the appraised value of a permanent residence owned and occupied by a North Carolina resident who has owned and occupied the property at least five years, is at least 65 years of age or is totally and permanently disabled, and whose income does not exceed $44,250. If the owner’s income is $29,500 or less, then the portion of property taxes imposed on the residence that exceeds 4% of the owner’s income may be deferred. If the owner’s income is more than $29,500 but less than or equal to $44,250, then the portion of the property taxes on the residence that exceeds 5% of the owner’s income may be deferred. 

The deferred taxes become a lien on the residence and the most recent three years of deferred taxes preceding a disqualifying event become due with interest upon one of the following disqualifying events: 
  • The owner transfers the residence.
  • The owner dies
  • The owner ceases to use the property as a permanent residence.
Multiple owners of a permanent residence must all qualify for the circuit breaker before a deferment of taxes will be allowed. You must apply for the opportunity to defer property taxes each and every year that you wish to defer taxes. The application may be obtained from the county tax department and it must be filed with the county assessor by June 1. Note: An owner who qualifies for both the property tax homestead exclusion and the property tax homestead circuit breaker may elect to take only one of these forms of property tax relief. Form AV-9 (Application for Property Tax Relief) must be filed annually with the Tax Assessor's Office by June 1 of each year and Form AV-9A (Disability Certification) must be filed at the time of the initial application if the applicant is not at least 65 years of age.

Disabled Veterans Exclusion

 
North Carolina excludes from property taxes $45,000 of the appraised value of a permanent residence owned and occupied by a qualifying owner, if you are an Honorably Discharged Veteran with a 100% total and permanent “service connected” disability, or the unmarried surviving spouse. Applicants must file Form AV-9 (Application for Property Tax Relief) as well as Form NCDVA-9 (Certification of Veteran Disability to qualify. This is a one time application and must be filed with the Tax Assessor's Office by June 1 of the year.