The Assessment Act sets out when the Board has jurisdiction to deal with property assessment appeals.
There are two common issues:
Missed the deadline for the Property Assessment Review Panel:
The Property Assessment Appeal Board is the second level of appeal. Usually the Board cannot deal with your appeal if you did not first appeal to the Property Assessment Review Panel by their deadline of January 31. There are two exceptions:
If there is something you could have done to avoid missing the deadline, the Board will likely decide that the circumstance was within your control and deny your application. For example, the Board will likely not be able to deal with your appeal if you were not familiar with the appeal process, did not follow instructions on the Notice of Assessment, or missed the Review Panel’s deadline merely because you were busy or were out-of-town.
If circumstances were beyond the property owner’s control, you may use the Board’s Form 1B, or write to the Board and include:
Upon receipt of your Form 1B, the Registrar will review your submission and provide an opinion of whether the Board has jurisdiction to hear the appeal. You can ask for reconsideration of the Registrar’s opinion.
Missed the deadline for the Property Assessment Appeal Board:
As stated in section 50(3) of the Assessment Act, you must file your appeal to the Board by April 30 following the Review Panel hearings. The Board’s inability to extend this deadline has been confirmed by the Courts except in circumstances where a party can show that the appeals was “filed” by the deadline.
For example, section 1 of the Assessment Act defines “file” as including “mail to or leave with the board…or deposit in the mail receptacle at their office”. Section 29 of the Interpretation Act defines “mail” as the “deposit of the matter to which the context applies in the Canada Post Office at any place in Canada, postage prepaid, for transmission by post and includes deliver”. The Board has previously indicated that the postmark applied to an envelope by Canada Post will usually provide evidence of when the envelope is deposited with Canada Post for transmission by mail. It is assumed to be correct in the absence of other evidence to the contrary, however, it does not create an irrefutable presumption of when a letter is mailed and evidence of physically depositing the notice prior to the deadline can be provided to refute this presumption. (Lloyd v. Area #11, 1999-11-00054, October 8, 1999; Gulmans v. Assessor of Area 23 2002 PAABBC 20027735, Bevan v. Area 04, 2009 PAABBC 20091067).
If you have evidence to refute the presumption or to prove that you “filed” the appeal prior to the deadline, you can ask for reconsideration of the Registrar’s opinion through a Form 8 or equivalent.
If you disagree with the Registrar's opinion:
To request reconsideration of the Registrar’s opinion on the jurisdiction to deal with your appeal, you must send a letter requesting reconsideration within 21 days. Include in your letter the reasons why you think the Board has jurisdiction. The Chair or a Vice Chair will then consider all the information and issue a written decision on whether or not the Board has jurisdiction.
Any outstanding appeal fees must be paid before the Board can review the jurisdiction. Please note that the fees will not be refunded regardless of the Board's decision on this issue. If you do not dispute the Registrar’s opinion, the Board will refund any appeal fees you have paid.
1 If the January 31 deadline for the Review Panel or the April 30 deadline for the Appeal Board falls on a weekend, the deadline may be moved to the following Monday.