Senator Brooks Encourages Residents to Apply for Property Tax/Rent Rebates

HARRISBURG (Feb. 5, 2018) — Sen. Michele Brooks reminds eligible residents that application forms for the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program are now available in her district offices, and she and her staff are available to help applicants complete the forms.

“As in years past, my staff and I welcome you to stop by one of my district offices, and we would be happy to help you navigate the paperwork,” Sen. Brooks said. “You are encouraged to visit us, ask questions and get free filing help, in our Greenville, Meadville and Edinboro offices.” It costs nothing to apply or receive help.

Claimants are reminded that they must reapply for rebates every year, as rebates are based on annual income and property taxes or rent paid each year.

If an applicant has passed away recently, spouses, personal representatives or estates may file rebate claims on his or her behalf, as long as the claimant lived at least one day in 2017 and meets all other eligibility criteria.

The deadline to apply for a rebate on property taxes or rent paid in 2017 is June 30, 2018. Rebates will be distributed beginning after July 1.

The program benefits eligible Pennsylvanians age 65 and older; widows and widowers age 50 and older; and people who are permanently disabled and age 18 and older. The income limit is $35,000 a year for homeowners and $15,000 annually for renters. Claimants can exclude half of their Social Security income from the calculation for eligibility.

Some applicants who received rebates in the past may continue to qualify, even if they have received Social Security cost-of-living adjustments that may have pushed their income past the eligibility limits.

You must provide proof of age if you are a first time filer. For first-time filers who are permanently disabled, applicants must provide a copy of their award letter. They must submit proof, such as photocopies, of all annual income (1099’s), including Social Security, pension, wages, interest and dividends.

Property owners must provide photocopies of their 2017 real estate tax bills that have been marked “paid” by the tax collector. Renters must provide a rent certificate signed by their landlord.

Since the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program began in 1971, older and permanently disabled adults have received more than $6.7 billion in property tax and rent relief. The program is funded by the Pennsylvania Lottery and revenue from slots gaming. More than $270 million in property tax and rent rebates have been sent to more than half a million homeowners and renters across the state for taxes and rent paid in 2016.

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