Important Information: Senate Bill 2355 from the 88th Regular Legislative Session made changes to Tax Code Chapter 41A relating to binding arbitration. These changes allow our office to implement an online process for limited binding arbitration (LBA) and manage an online arbitrator registry. The Property Tax Arbitration System (PTAS) will be available in mid-2024 and more information about using PTAS will be released in the coming months. Until the online system becomes available, arbitration filings will follow the current process.
House Bill 4101 from the 88th Regular Legislative Session amended one of the reasons for filing for LBA and is effective for Tax Code Chapter 41 protests filed on or after Jan. 1, 2024. The updated Request for LBA (PDF) will be available prior to the 2024 protest season.
Tax Code Section 41A.015 gives property owners meeting certain criteria the option to request limited binding arbitration (LBA) to compel the appraisal review board (ARB) or the chief appraiser, as appropriate, to:
The Comptroller's office is responsible for maintaining the Arbitrator Registry, processing requests, remitting payment to the arbitrator when appropriate and refunding any portion of the property owner's deposit (PDF) as applicable, but is prohibited from giving advice or direction on a matter relating to a pending arbitration.
Property owners are encouraged to read and be familiar with Tax Code Chapter 41A and Comptroller Rules relating to LBA.
A property owner may not request LBA unless:
Not earlier than 11 days or later than 30 days after the date the property owner delivers the required notice described above, a property owner must file Form AP-241, Request for Limited Binding Arbitration (PDF) together with the required deposit (PDF) with the Comptroller’s office at the following address:Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts
A property owner may file a single LBA request that covers more than one property, more than one protest hearing or more than one procedural violation. The deposit (PDF) amount is computed based on the single property that would have required the largest deposit if filed separately.
Once the arbitration has been processed, the Comptroller's office will appoint an arbitrator to hear the dispute. Only arbitrators who are licensed attorneys may be appointed to LBA cases.
The arbitrator is responsible for working with the parties to set the date, time and location of the hearing.
More information about arbitrator qualification, the assignment process and the scheduling of hearings can be found on the Arbitrator Registry and Duties webpage.
At the conclusion of the hearing the arbitrator must determine if the ARB or chief appraiser failed to comply with one or more of the procedural requirements indicated in the request. If the arbitrator determines the ARB or chief appraiser failed to comply, the ARB or chief appraiser must comply with the requirement or, if a hearing has already been held and determined on the protest, the ARB must rescind the ARB order and hold a new hearing that complies with the procedural requirement.
If an arbitrator determines the ARB or chief appraiser failed to comply with one or more procedural requirements indicated in the LBA request, the property owner's deposit will be refunded, minus a $50 administrative fee retained by the Comptroller's office and the appraisal district will pay the arbitrator's fee as indicated on the determination form. If an arbitrator determines the ARB or chief appraiser complied with the procedural requirements indicated in the LBA request, the property owner's deposit will be used to pay the arbitrator's fee as indicated on the determination form.
Arbitrators are required by law to dismiss all LBA requests they determine do not meet the requirements of the law. In the event that a case is dismissed, other than when there are delinquent taxes on the property, the arbitrator may charge up to the total allowable fee and the property owner may not receive a refund of their deposit. LBA requests are required to be dismissed for the following reasons: