New York State Star Program
New guidelines to cut down on fraud now require those receiving the basic exemption through the New York State STAR program to participate in a one-time re-register this year in order to continue receiving the benefit.
Registration begins on Aug. 19 and continues through Dec. 31.
All homeowners receiving the Basic STAR benefit (available on the primary residence of homeowners who earn less than $500,000) will need to register with the state Department of Taxation and Finance to continue receiving the exemption in 2014 and subsequent years. Homeowners will not need to re-register annually.
Seniors who receive Enhanced STAR will be exempt from the new requirements and will not need to register; they will continue to perform their annual registrations or participate in the Income Verification Program as in past years.
The new guidelines do not affect homeowners age 65 or above enrolled in Enhanced STAR.
Additionally, first-time applicants are not affected by this year's registration procedure and must file Form RP-425, Application for School Tax Relief Exemption, with their local assessor.
To support the registration effort and to discourage fraud and abuse, individual fines and penalties were incorporated into the program for intentional misinformation and/or if the exemption is revoked.
Homeowners can register through the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance's website at www.tax.ny.gov. Registration or via phone at 518-457-2036.