There are several types of property tax appeals handled at the Washington State Board of Tax Appeal (WSBTA).
Property Valuation Appeals
Most matters filed with the WSBTA are appeals from an order of a county board of equalization on property value. You may also file a direct appeal with the WSBTA without first appealing to the county board of equalization. In a valuation appeal, the WSBTA determines whether the assessed value of your property represents its fair market value.
Other Property Tax Appeals
The WSBTA also hears appeals from orders of a county board of equalization on other property tax matters, such as designations and taxes due under the state’s open space, timberland, or forest programs, and tax exemptions administered by the county board of equalization. You may also file a direct appeal with the WSBTA without first appealing to the county board of equalization.
The WSBTA also hears appeals from decisions of a county board of equalization on reconvene requests. See WAC 458-14-127.
Orders of the Department of Revenue
Some property tax exemption programs and property tax valuations are under the jurisdiction of the Washington State Department of Revenue. The WSBTA hears appeals from decisions of the Department of Revenue in these areas.
Other Denials by the County Board of Equalization or Department of Revenue
If a county board of equalization or Department of Revenue declines to hear an appeal, or dismisses an appeal for procedural reasons, the WSBTA will hear an appeal from that action. If the action does not include a ruling on the underlying issue (e.g., value of property, qualification for exemption, etc.), the WSBTA does not make a ruling on the issue either. The WSBTA will issue a decision solely on whether the action of the county board or Department of Revenue was proper and remand the case back for a ruling on the issue (which can later be appealed to the WSBTA).
Formal or Informal Appeals
You may appeal any of these matters to the WSBTA under its informal or formal process. The informal process is generally less formal, but the WSBTA’s decision cannot be appealed to Superior Court. Formal decisions may be further appealed to Superior Court under RCW 82.03.180, but all taxes be paid prior to court review.
How to File an Appeal
You must file your appeal to the WSBTA on or before the 30th day after the mailing date of the decision by the county board or Department of Revenue. The WSBTA has no authority to waive or extend the filing deadline.
- Please refer to our Appeals FAQ page.
- Managing Your Appeal 2017– information for residential taxpayers.
- The WSBTA administrative rules are located in Chapters 456-09 and 456-10 of the Washington Administrative Code.
- You can search previous WSBTA decisions at our decisions page.
- Please refer to our Forms & Publications page.