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Online Protest Instructions

Filing an online protest is easy if you have the account number and the iFile number printed at the top of your appraisal notice or pre-printed protest form. Simply enter the iFile year, iFile number and the account number and follow the instructions on each screen. Once your protest has been successfully transmitted, you will receive a confirmation by email. Print and save the confirmation for your records. If you have trouble, you can still protest in writing as long as you do so by the applicable deadline (see below).
Help on specific items:
Welcome/account entry screen:
Remember, you can only use this system for protests for the Harris County Appraisal District. You must have both your account number and the iFile number that is printed at the top of your appraisal notice or pre-printed protest form in order to use this system. If you donít have these, you must submit your protest in writing to the district. Please use the pre-printed protest form if you do so. If you have problems with this screen, be sure you type your account number and iFile number correctly.
iFile Protest Entry Form:
Information on your account: Once you have entered your iFile number and account number and clicked submit, you will see an on-line version of the standard protest form. At the top of the pages is your account number, owner name, and property description. Be sure this information is correct before proceeding. If it isnít, scroll to the bottom of the page and click the clear and start over button. This will take you back to the welcome/account entry screen.
  1. Reason for your protest: You must check at least one of these. Several have text boxes for you to provide more information. If you donít provide a required item, you will be prompted to go back and provide it before you can proceed.
  2. Optional facts to help resolve your case: Give a brief summary of the evidence that supports your protest. This step is optional.
  3. Opinion of Market value: Give the dollar amount of the propertyís market value. Again, this step is optional.
  4. Copy of ARB hearing procedures: The law requires us to have this check box, but we will send you a copy of the ARBís hearing procedures in any event. Check yes or no.
  5. Email address: You must provide a valid e-mail address. Confirmation of your protest will be sent to this address, and we will keep your address confidential to the extent permitted by law.
  6. Representative information: Most people skip this section. You can use it if you want to appoint a friend or family member to represent you in your protest. If you do use it, be sure to fill in all the blanks.
  7. Submit the protest: Clicking the submit button takes you to the next step. Clicking the clear and start over button takes you back to the welcome/account entry screen.
Are you sure you want to proceed Screen
information you have entered is correct. If so, click the submit my protest button. If not, click the change my information button. The change my information button takes you back to the protest entry form so you can make the necessary changes. Your protest will not be submitted until you click the submit my protest button on this screen.
Your protest is complete screen
Print a copy of this screen for your records. It is the official receipt for your protest. At the bottom of the screen is a button for protesting additional accounts. Use this button to protest accounts under the same ownership that you would like to have heard on the same day. If you are going to enter a protest for an account that someone else owns, donít use the additional protest button. Return the www.hcad.org/iFile page.
If you need more help, contact the Appraisal Districtís at the information on the contact page. Additional information about protesting appears below.
If you want the Appraisal Review Board to hear and decide your case, you must file a written notice of protest with the Appraisal Review Board (ARB) for the Appraisal District that took the action you want to protest. To be valid, a notice of protest must identify the owner and the property, and must indicate the nature of the protest. For this reason, it is important that the notice of protest form be completed fully (including the tax account number).
Filing Deadlines: The usual deadline for filing your notice (having it postmarked if you mail it) is midnight, May 31. However, we encourage you to return the form as quickly as possible. A different deadline will apply to you if:
1)   your notice of appraised value was mailed to you after May 2;
2)   your protest concerns a change in use of agricultural, open-space, or timber land;
3)   the ARB made a change to the appraisal records that adversely affects you and you received notice of change;
4)   the Appraisal District or the ARB was required by law to send you notice about a property and did not; or
5)   you had good cause for missing the May 31 protest filing deadline.
Contact the Appraisal District for your specific protest filing deadline. The ARB will determine if good cause exists for missing a deadline. Good cause means that something beyond your control, such as a medical emergency, prevented you from meeting the deadline.
Weekends, Holidays: If your deadline falls on a Saturday, Sunday or other legal holiday, it is postponed until midnight of the next working day.
When the Appraisal Review Board schedules your protest hearing we will send you (or in some cases your authorized agent) a notice giving the date, time, and place of the hearing at least 15 days in advance.
Before the hearing, you may wish to visit the Harris County Appraisal District's Information & Assistance Division at the location on the contact page. You may conduct research using public computer terminals, or you may review printouts of property value and sales information.
If you cannot or do not want to attend your scheduled hearing in person, the law allows you to submit your evidence in the form of a sworn affidavit. The affidavit must state that you swear or affirm that the information that it contains is true and correct, and you must execute it before a notary public or other public official who is authorized to administer oaths.
After you receive your scheduling notice, if you decide you want to submit an affidavit, please make sure it identifies the property owner and his or her address, that it reflects the account number and property description and that it shows the date and time of the hearing. To ensure that the affidavit is available for consideration, it should be received at the hearing location at least two (2) days prior to the date and time of the hearing.
You may also have a representative appear for you. This person should be able to discuss your property from personal knowledge. If a property tax agent will be appearing in your behalf, a valid agent appointment form must first be filed with the Appraisal District. Agent appointments must be made on Texas State Comptroller's Form 1.111.
You may authorize a relative or friend to appear at your hearing by completing the Representative Information section of the online protest. Representative powers are reserved only for family members or friends who do not charge you for representation. You must use Texas State Comptroller's Form 1.111 to appoint a paid representative.


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