A tax defer payment program to provide assistance for the elderly of Lackawanna County will kick-off on March 1 for individuals who meet the income guidelines of the initiative.
The County’s Tax Claim Bureau’s “Extension For Elderly/Deferral of Taxes” will offer eligible persons 65 years of age or older an opportunity to extend or defer the period of time to pay their taxes. The overall goal of this program is to prevent them for losing their residences and/or the equity in their homes as a result of unpaid real estate taxes.
The program was enacted by the Commissioners on Sept. 21, 2016. It is being administered by the County’s Area Agency on Aging and the Scranton Lackawanna Human Development Agency (SLHDA).
To be eligible, an applicant’s household income must be equal to or less than the maximum household income necessary to qualify for a property tax or rent rebate under the Senior Citizens Rebate Act.
To determine eligibility, the Tax Bureau and Area Agency on Aging will review tax return documents, homeowner’s insurance data and income information. If the applicant meets the requirements of the program, an additional three-month tax payment extension would be granted.
After this point, if the owner desires to continue to live in the residence and cannot afford to pay the taxes the Tax Claim Bureau may stay the tax sale and defer payment until such time as title to the property is transferred or the owner is no longer the sole occupant of the property.
Once the title to the property is transferred and the eligible owner is no longer the sole occupant, the taxes and simple interest shall be due.
For general tax information, call the Tax Claim Bureau at 570-963-6734.
For applications, guideline reviews and assistance, contact the Area Agency on Aging at 570-963-6740 or SLHDA at 570-963-6836.