If you are disabled, collecting federal Social Security disability benefits and a homeowner in Clackamas County, you may qualify for the Disabled Citizens' Deferral, if you are at least 62 years of age and a homeowner in Clackamas County, you may qualify for the Senior Citizens' Deferral. Qualification under either program allows you to delay paying property taxes on your residence.
- For the Senior Citizens' Deferral, you must be 62 years old by April 15 the year you file.
- For the Disabled Citizens' Deferral, you must be receiving federal Social Security disability benefits on Dec. 31 the year before you file.
For either deferral program
- You must have a recorded deed to the property or be buying the property under a recorded sales contract. Certain trust or trustee arrangements qualify for deferral. You would not be eligible for deferral if you have a life estate interest in the property.
Your net worth limit is $500,000.
- Net worth is the total of the current market value of all of your assets minus any debts. It does not include the value of the home for which you're claiming property tax deferral, the cash value of your life insurance policies, or tangible personal property (vehicles, furniture, appliances, clothing, etc.) that you own.
- Assets include:
- Real property (other than the property for deferral)
- Checking and savings accounts
For 2021, annual household income during 2020 cannot exceed $46,000. Household Income includes the income of all persons living in the home with you.
You must live in your home for at least five years before April 15 of the year in which you apply for the program, unless you had to live away from it for health reasons.
You must show proof of homeowner's insurance that covers fire and other casualties.
Real Market Value
The real market value (RMV) of your home cannot be more than 100% of the county median RMV, but there are graduated allowances based on additional years of occupancy.
Deferral accounts accrue interest at the rate of 6% yearly. Interest continues to accrue each year on the balance of deferred tax amounts paid by the Department of Revenue.
To remain in the program, you must "re-certify" every two years. This means you must re-apply for the program every other year and meet all of the qualifications. If you do not re-certify or qualify, the state will not pay your property taxes.
House Bill 2587 (2019) passed in the 2019 legislative session to allow homes with certain reverse mortgages to qualify for the Senior and Disabled Deferral Program starting January 1, 2020.
If you entered into a reverse mortgage on or after July 1, 2011 and before January 1, 2017 and have equity in your home of at least 40 percent as of the date of your deferral application, you may qualify for deferral. This does not enable retroactive deferral payments for prior tax years but enables deferral to pay the taxes to the county going forward for homes that qualify.
The State records a lien on your property
- The deferred taxes paid by the state become a first lien on your property, except for the liens of mortgages or trust deeds that were recorded first.
- The lien amount is an estimate of future taxes to be paid and interest to be charged, based on life expectancy tables.
- When the Oregon Department of Revenue has approved your application, you must tell your mortgage holder that the state will be paying your taxes.
Paying the deferred taxes
The deferred taxes plus interest have to be paid when any of the following occurs:
- The taxpayer getting the deferral passes away leaving no surviving spouse
- You sell the property or in some way change the ownership
- You cease to permanently live on the property
How to File
- You need to file an application with our office between Jan, 1 and April 15 to defer the taxes due the following Nov. 15.
- Income verification is required when you file
If you have questions or wish to file, you can contact our office at 503-655-8671 and ask for assistance with the Senior Tax Deferral Clerk.
You can also download an Information Circular from the State about the Senior Tax Deferral.