Real property is subject to reassessment as of the date of death of the property owner. The death of a property owner is a change in ownership and may affect your property taxes. It does not matter if the property is held in trust.
California State Board of Equalization Property Tax Rule 462.260 states, "For purpose of reappraising real property as of the date of change in ownership (by will or intestate succession), the date of death of the decedent shall be used."
California Revenue & Taxation Code Section 480 requires notification be given to the Assessor within 150 days after the date of death, or if the estate is probated, at the time the inventory and appraisal is filed. Therefore, it is important to notify the Assessor in a timely manner. To report the death of a property owner, you may fill out a Change in Ownership Statement Death of Real Property Owner and send it to the Marin County Assessor's Office with a copy of the death certificate. The mailing address is Marin County Assessor-Recorder-Marin County Clerk, PO Box C, San Rafael, CA 94913.
Failure to report the death may result in penalties. If the property is in a trust, you may want to review the trust papers with an attorney.
It is also important to inform the Assessor if there is a surviving spouse, or if the property is to be transferred from the estate to decedent's children. If the property is being transferred from a parent to child(ren), a Claim for Reassessment Exclusion for Transfer between Parent and Child form may be filed.
These forms are important even if the property sells shortly after the owner's date of death. If no exclusion is processed, the estate will be liable for supplemental property taxes as of the date of death.
For instruction on how to provide proper notification of the death of a property owner, please contact the Marin County Assessor Ownership Transfer Division, Our office is located at the Marin County Civic Center, 3501 Civic Center Drive room 208, San Rafael, CA. You can also contact a member of the Ownership transfer staff via phone at (415) 473-7231 or via email. Office hours are from 9:00 a.m to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday (closed major holidays).
If you need additional information or have more questions related to the recording of documents, please contact us. Our office is located at the Marin County Civic Center, 3501 Civic Center Drive room 232, San Rafael, CA. You can also contact a member of the Recorder staff via phone at (415) 473-6092 or via email. Office hours are from 8:00 a.m to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday (closed major holidays).