Free Help for Homeowners Who are Behind on Property Taxes

Submitted by:  Summit County Fiscal Officer Kristen M. Scalise CPA, CFE

DELINQUENT PROPERTY TAX CLINIC ON MARCH 21

Free help will be available to Summit County homeowners who have fallen behind on the payment of property taxes during a Delinquent Property Tax Clinic on Thursday, March 21, 2019 from 1 to 6 p.m. at the OhioMeansJobs Center, 1040 E. Tallmadge Ave., Akron, Ohio 44310. The clinic will be hosted by Summit County Fiscal Officer Kristen M. Scalise CPA, CFE, HFLA of Northeast Ohio, Summit County Executive Ilene Shapiro’s Department of Job and Family Services, Fair Housing Contact Service, Inc., Akron Financial Empowerment Center, Mustard Seed Development Center, and Community Legal Aid.

Property owners who attend the clinic will have the opportunity to meet individually with a representative from the Summit County Fiscal Office, to establish a payment plan to fit their needs. Enrollment in a payment plan will freeze delinquent property tax balances and help the property owner avoid further penalties and interest. 

“We look forward to helping homeowners find a payment plan that will work for them. The Fiscal Office can offer assistance at every stage of the payment process,” said Summit County Fiscal Officer Kristen M. Scalise CPA, CFE. “If you have delinquent property taxes, or feel that you may become delinquent, I encourage you to visit us during the tax clinic. We’re here to help.”

Loans and grants to pay delinquent property taxes may be available to those who qualify.  The HFLA of Northeast Ohio will offer interest free loans to eligible applicants that can be used to pay down delinquent property tax balances. Summit County Executive Ilene Shapiro’s Department of Job and Family Services will work with property owners to determine their eligibility for grant opportunities.      

Counseling and support services will be available to residents who have housing and finance questions. Representatives from Fair Housing Contact Service, Inc. will address concerns of housing discrimination, assist with mortgage delinquencies, and provide support to manage tax repayment plans. The Akron Financial Empowerment Center will provide financial coaching to help individuals acquire skills to budget, save, and develop healthy banking relationships and raise their credit scores. Mustard Seed Development Center will provide individuals with financial education and training, to help them maintain home ownership status. 

Additionally, Community Legal Aid will have attorneys on hand to provide free, high quality civil legal services to those in need.

“Our attorneys will be on-site, ready to help answer questions and offer counsel and advice. Our goal is to help people get on repayment plans so that they can save their homes,” said John Petit, Managing Attorney for Legal Aid’s Housing Team.

“This roadshow is a great way to reach those who need help the most. It’s one-stop shopping, where you can get your housing questions answered, speak with an attorney, and find real solutions to your tax debt,” said Steve McGarrity, Executive Director of Community Legal Aid. “We’re excited to be partnering with the Fiscal Office on this, because it’s a safe and easy way for our residents to solve this problem.”

The delinquent property tax clinic is free and open to the public, no registration is necessary. Those who anticipate needing special accommodations or have questions about physical access may call (330)643-8472 or email summittreas@summitoh.net.

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