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  Real Property Taxation:
TITLE TWO. — REAL PROPERTY TAXATION
CHAPTER 1. — GENERAL PROVISIONS

SECTION 197. Scope. — This Title shall govern the administration, appraisal, assessment, levy and collection of real property tax.

SECTION 198. Fundamental Principles. — The appraisal, assessment, levy and collection of real property tax shall be guided by the following fundamental principles:

(a) Real property shall be appraised at its current and fair market value;

(b) Real property shall be classified for assessment purposes on the basis of its actual use;

(c) Real property shall be assessed on the basis of a uniform classification within each local government unit;

(d) The appraisal, assessment, levy and collection of real property tax shall not be let to any private person; and

(e) The appraisal and assessment of real property shall be equitable.

SECTION 199. Definitions. — When used in this Title:

(a) “Acquisition Cost” for newly-acquired machinery not yet depreciated and appraised within the year of its purchase, refers to the actual cost of the machinery to its present owner, plus the cost of transportation, handling, and installation at the present site;

(b) “Actual Use” refers to the purpose for which the property is principally or predominantly utilized by the person in possession thereof;

(c) “Ad Valorem Tax” is a levy on real property determined on the basis of a fixed proportion of the value of the property;

(d) “Agricultural Land” is land devoted principally to the planting of trees, raising of crops, livestock and poultry, dairying, salt making, inland fishing and similar aquacultural activities, and other agricultural activities, and is not classified as mineral, timber, residential, commercial or industrial land;

(e) “Appraisal” is the act or process of determining the value of property as of a specified date for a specific purpose;

(f) “Assessment” is the act or process of determining the value of a property, or proportion thereof subject to tax, including the discovery, listing, classification, and appraisal of properties;

(g) “Assessment Level” is the percentage applied to the fair market value to determine the taxable value of the property;

(h) “Assessed Value” is the fair market value of the real property multiplied by the assessment level. It is synonymous to taxable value;

(i) “Commercial Land” is land devoted principally for the object of profit and is not classified as agricultural, industrial, mineral, timber, or residential land;

(j) “Depreciated Value” is the value remaining after deducting depreciation from the acquisition cost;

(k) “Economic Life” is the estimated period over which it is anticipated that a machinery or equipment may be profitably utilized;

(l) “Fair Market Value” is the price at which a property may be sold by a seller who is not compelled to sell and bought by a buyer who is not compelled to buy;

(m) “Improvement” is a valuable addition made to a property or an amelioration in its condition, amounting to more than a mere repair or replacement of parts involving capital expenditures and labor, which is intended to enhance its value, beauty or utility or to adapt it for new or further purposes;

(n) “Industrial Land” is land devoted principally to industrial activity as capital investment and is not classified as agricultural, commercial, timber, mineral or residential land;

(o) “Machinery” embraces machines, equipment, mechanical contrivances, instruments, appliances or apparatus which may or may not be attached, permanently or temporarily, to the real property. It includes the physical facilities for production, the installations and appurtenant service facilities, those which are mobile, self-powered or self-propelled, and those not permanently attached to the real property which are actually, directly, and exclusively used to meet the needs of the particular industry, business or activity and which by their very nature and purpose are designed for, or necessary to its manufacturing, mining, logging, commercial, industrial or agricultural purposes;

(p) “Mineral Lands” are lands in which minerals, metallic or non-metallic, exist in sufficient quantity or grade to justify the necessary expenditures to extract and utilize such materials;

(q) “Reassessment” is the assigning of new assessed values to property, particularly real estate, as the result of a general, partial, or individual reappraisal of the property;

(r) “Remaining Economic Life” is the period of time expressed in years from the date of appraisal to the date when the machinery becomes valueless;

(s) “Remaining Value” is the value corresponding to the remaining useful life of the machinery;

(t) “Replacement or Reproduction Cost” is the cost that would be incurred on the basis of current prices, in acquiring an equally desirable substitute property, or the cost of reproducing a new replica of the property on the basis of current prices with the same or closely similar material; and

(u) “Residential Land” is land principally devoted to habitation.

SECTION 200. Administration of the Real Property Tax. — The provinces and cities, including the municipalities within the Metropolitan Manila Area, shall be primarily responsible for the proper, efficient and effective administration of the real property tax.

CHAPTER 2 — APPRAISAL AND ASSESSMENT
OF REAL PROPERTY

SECTION 201. Appraisal of Real Property. — All real property, whether taxable or exempt, shall be appraised at the current and fair market value prevailing in the locality where the property is situated. The Department of Finance shall promulgate the necessary rules and regulations for the classification, appraisal, and assessment of real property pursuant to the provisions of this Code.

SECTION 202. Declaration of real Property by the Owner or Administrator. — It shall be the duty of all persons, natural or juridical, owning or administering real property, including the improvements therein, within a city or municipality, or their duly authorized representative, to prepare, or cause to be prepared, and file with the provincial, city or municipal assessor, a sworn statement declaring the true value of their property, whether previously declared or undeclared, taxable or exempt, which shall be the current and fair market value of the property, as determined by the declarant. Such declaration shall contain a description of the property sufficient in detail to enable the assessor or his deputy to identify the same for assessment purposes. The sworn declaration of real property herein referred to shall be filed with the assessor concerned once every three (3) years during the period from January first (1st) to June thirtieth (30th) commencing with the calendar year 1992.

SECTION 203. Duty of Person Acquiring Real Property or Making Improvement Thereon. — It shall also be the duty of any person, or his authorized representative, acquiring at any time real property in any municipality or city or making any improvement on real property, to prepare, or cause to be prepared, and file with the provincial, city or municipal assessor, a sworn statement declaring the true value of subject property, within sixty (60) days after the acquisition of such property or upon completion or occupancy of the improvement, whichever comes earlier.

SECTION 204. Declaration of Real Property by the Assessor. — When any person, natural or juridical, by whom real property is required to be declared under Section 202 hereof, refuses or fails for any reason to make such declaration within the time prescribed, the provincial, city or municipal assessor shall himself declare the property in the name of the defaulting owner, if known, or against an unknown owner, as the case may be, and shall assess the property for taxation in accordance with the provision of this Title. No oath shall be required of a declaration thus made by the provincial, city or municipal assessor.

SECTION 205. Listing of Real Property in the Assessment Rolls. — (a) In every province and city, including the municipalities within the Metropolitan Manila Area, there shall be prepared and maintained by the provincial, city or municipal assessor an assessment roll wherein shall be listed all real property, whether taxable or exempt, located within the territorial jurisdiction of the local government unit concerned. Real property shall be listed, valued and assessed in the name of the owner or administrator, or anyone having legal interest in the property.

(b) The undivided real property of a deceased person may be listed, valued and assessed in the name of the estate or of the heirs and devisees without designating them individually; and undivided real property other than that owned by a deceased may be listed, valued and assessed in the name of one or more co-owners: Provided, however, That such heir, devisee, or co-owner shall be liable severally and proportionately for all obligations imposed by this Title and the payment of the real property tax with respect to the undivided property.

(c) The real property of a corporation, partnership, or association shall be listed, valued and assessed in the same manner as that of an individual.

(d) Real property owned by the Republic of the Philippines, its instrumentalities and political subdivisions, the beneficial use of which has been granted, for consideration or otherwise, to a taxable person, shall be listed, valued and assessed in the name of the possessor, grantee or of the public entity if such property has been acquired or held for resale or lease.

SECTION 206. Proof of Exemption of Real Property from Taxation. — Every person by or for whom real property is declared, who shall claim tax exemption for such property under this Title shall file with the provincial, city or municipal assessor within thirty (30) days from the date of the declaration of real property sufficient documentary evidence in support of such claim including corporate charters, title of ownership, articles of incorporation, by-laws, contracts, affidavits, certifications and mortgage deeds, and similar documents.
If the required evidence is not submitted within the period herein prescribed, the property shall be listed as taxable in the assessment roll. However, if the property shall be proven to be tax exempt, the same shall be dropped from the assessment roll.

SECTION 207. Real Property Identification System. — All declarations of real property made under the provisions of this Title shall be kept and filed under a uniform classification system to be established by the provincial, city or municipal assessor.

SECTION 208. Notification of Transfer of Real Property Ownership. — Any person who shall transfer real property ownership to another shall notify the provincial, city or municipal assessor concerned within sixty (60) days from the date of such transfer. The notification shall include the mode of transfer, the description of the property alienated, the name and address of the transferee.

SECTION 209. Duty of Registrar of Deeds to Appraise Assessor of Real Property Listed in Registry. — (a) To ascertain whether or not any real property entered in the Registry of Property has escaped discovery and listing for the purpose of taxation, the Registrar of Deeds shall prepare and submit to the provincial, city or municipal assessor, within six (6) months from the date of effectivity of this Code and every year thereafter, an abstract of his registry, which shall include brief but sufficient description of the real properties entered therein, their present owners, and the dates of their most recent transfer or alienation accompanied by copies of corresponding deeds of sale, donation, or partition or other forms of alienation.

(b) It shall also be the duty of the Registrar of Deeds to require every person who shall present for registration a document of transfer, alienation, or encumbrance of real property to accompany the same with a certificate to the effect that the real property subject of the transfer, alienation, or encumbrance, as the case may be, has been fully paid of all real property taxes due thereon. Failure to provide such certificate shall be a valid cause for the Registrar of Deeds to refuse the registration of the document.

SECTION 210. Duty of Official Issuing Building Permit or Certificate of Registration of Machinery to Transmit Copy to Assessor. — Any public official or employee who may now or hereafter be required by law or regulation to issue to any person a permit for the construction, addition, repair, or renovation of a building, or permanent improvement on land, or a certificate of registration for any machinery, including machines, mechanical contrivances, and apparatus attached or affixed on land or to another real property, shall transmit a copy of such permit or certificate within thirty (30) days of its issuance, to the assessor of the province, city or municipality where the property is situated.

SECTION 211. Duty of Geodetic Engineers to Furnish Copy of Plans to Assessor. — It shall be the duty of all geodetic engineers, public or private, to furnish free of charge to the assessor of the province, city or municipality where the land is located with a white or blue print copy of each of all approved original or subdivision plans or maps of surveys executed by them within thirty (30) days from receipt of such plans from the Lands Management Bureau, the Land Registration Authority, or the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board, as the case may be.

SECTION 212. Preparation of Schedule of Fair Market Values. — Before any general revision of property assessment is made pursuant to the provisions of this Title, there shall be prepared a schedule of fair market values by the provincial, city and municipal assessor of the municipalities within the Metropolitan Manila Area for the different classes of real property situated in their respective local government units for enactment by ordinance of the sanggunian concerned. The schedule of fair market values shall be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the province, city or municipality concerned or in the absence thereof, shall be posted in the provincial capitol, city or municipal hall and in two other conspicuous public places therein.

SECTION 213. Authority of Assessor to Take Evidence. — For the purpose of obtaining information on which to base the market value of any real property, the assessor of the province, city or municipality or his deputy may summon the owners of the properties to be affected or persons having legal interest therein and witnesses, administer oaths, and take deposition concerning the property, its ownership, amount, nature, and value.

SECTION 214. Amendment of Schedule of Fair Market Values. — The provincial, city or municipal assessor may recommend to the sanggunian concerned amendments to correct errors in valuation in the schedule of fair market values. The sanggunian concerned shall, by ordinance, act upon the recommendation within ninety (90) days from receipt thereof.

SECTION 215. Classes of Real Property for Assessment Purposes. — For purposes of assessment, real property shall be classified as residential, agricultural, commercial, industrial, mineral, timberland or special.
The city or municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area, through their respective sanggunian, shall have the power to classify lands as residential, agricultural, commercial, industrial, mineral, timberland, or special in accordance with their zoning ordinances.

SECTION 216. Special Classes of Real Property. — All lands, buildings, and other improvements thereon actually, directly and exclusively used for hospitals, cultural, or scientific purposes, and those owned and used by local water districts, and government-owned or controlled corporations rendering essential public services in the supply and distribution of water and/or generation and transmission of electric power shall be classified as special.

SECTION 217. Actual Use of Real Property as Basis for Assessment. — Real property shall be classified, valued and assessed on the basis of its actual use regardless of where located, whoever owns it, and whoever uses it.

SECTION 218. Assessment Levels. — The assessment levels to be applied to the fair market value of real property to determine its assessed value shall be fixed by ordinances of the sangguniang panlalawigan, sangguniang panlungsod or sangguniang bayan of a municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area, at the rates not exceeding the following:

(a) On Lands:

CLASS ASSESSMENT LEVELS
Residential 20%
Agricultural 40%
Commercial 50%
Industrial 50%
Mineral 50%
Timberland 20%

(b) On Buildings and Other Structures:

(1) Residential

Fair market Value
Over
Not Over Assessment Levels
  P 175,000.00 0%
P 175,000.00 300,000.00 10%
300,000.00 500,000.00 20%
500,000.00 750,000.00 25%
750,000.00 1,000,000.00 30%
1,000,000.00 2,000,000.00 35%
2,000,000.00 5,000,000.00 40%
5,000,000.00 10,000,000.00 50%
10,000,000.00   60%

(2) Agricultural

Fair Market Value
Over
Not Over Assessment Levels
  P 300,000.00 25%
P 300,000.00 500,000.00 30%
500,000.00 750,000.00 35%
750,000.00 1,000,000.00 40%
1,000,000.00 2,000,000.00 45%
2,000,000.00   50%

(3) Commercial / Industrial

Fair Market Value
Over
Not Over Assessment Levels
  P 300,000.00 30%
P 300,000.00 500,000.00 35%
500,000.00 750,000.00 40%
750,000.00 1,000,000.00 50%
1,000,000.00 2,000,000.00 60%
2,000,000.00 5,000,000.00 70%
5,000,000.00 10,000,000.00 75%
10,000,000.00   80%

(4) Timberland

Fair Market Value
Over
Not Over Assessment Levels
  P 300,000.00 45%
P 300,000.00 500,000.00 50%
500,000.00 750,000.00 55%
750,000.00 1,000,000.00 60%
1,000,000.00 2,000,000.00 65%
2,000,000.00   70%

(c) On Machineries

Class Assessment Levels
Agricultural 40%
Residential 50%
Commercial 80%
Industrial 80%

(d) On Special Classes: The assessment levels for all lands buildings, machineries and other improvements;

Actual Use Assessment Level
Cultural 15%
Scientific 15%
Hospital 15%
Local water districts 10%
Government-owned or
controlled corporations
engaged in the supply
and distribution of water
and/or generation and
transmission of
electric power
 
 
 
 
10%

SECTION 219. General Revision of Assessment and Property Classification. — The provincial, city or municipal assessor shall undertake a general revision of real property assessments within two (2) years after the effectivity of this Code and every three (3) years thereafter.

SECTION 220. Valuation of Real Property. — In cases where (a) real property is declared and listed for taxation purposes for the first time; (b) there is an ongoing general revision of property classification and assessment; or (c) a request is made by the person in whose name the property is declared, the provincial, city or municipal assessor or his duly authorized deputy shall, in accordance with the provisions of this Chapter, make a classification, appraisal and assessment or taxpayer's valuation thereon: Provided, however, That the assessment of real property shall not be increased oftener than once every three (3) years except in case of new improvements substantially increasing the value of said property or of any change in its actual use.

SECTION 221. Date of Effectivity of Assessment or Reassessment. — All assessments or reassessments made after the first (1st) day of January of any year shall take effect on the first (1st) day of January of the succeeding year: Provided, however, That the reassessment of real property due to its partial or total destruction, or to a major change in its actual use, or to any great and sudden inflation or deflation of real property values, or to the gross illegality of the assessment when made or to any other abnormal cause, shall be made within ninety (90) days from the date any such cause or causes occurred, and shall take effect at the beginning of the quarter next following the reassessment.

SECTION 222. Assessment of Property Subject to Back Taxes. — Real property declared for the first time shall be assessed for taxes for the period during which it would have been liable but in no case of more than ten (10) years prior to the date of initial assessment: Provided, however, That such taxes shall be computed on the basis of the applicable schedule of values in force during the corresponding period.
If such taxes are paid on or before the end of the quarter following the date the notice of assessment was received by the owner or his representative, no interest for delinquency shall be imposed thereon; otherwise, such taxes shall be subject to an interest at the rate of two percent (2%) per month or a fraction thereof from the date of the receipt of the assessment until such taxes are fully paid.

SECTION 223. Notification of New or Revised Assessment. — When real property is assessed for the first time or when an existing assessment is increased or decreased, the provincial, city or municipal assessor shall within thirty (30) days give written notice of such new or revised assessment to the person in whose name the property is declared. The notice may be delivered personally or by registered mail or through the assistance of the punong barangay to the last known address of the person to be served.
SECTION 224. Appraisal and Assessment of Machinery. — (a) The fair market value of a brand-new machinery shall be the acquisition cost. In all other cases, the fair market value shall be determined by dividing the remaining economic life of the machinery by its estimated economic life and multiplied by the replacement or reproduction cost.

(b) If the machinery is imported, the acquisition cost includes freight, insurance, bank and other charges, brokerage, armature and handling, duties and taxes, plus charges at the present site. The cost in foreign currency of imported machinery shall be converted to peso cost on the basis of foreign currency exchange rates as fixed by the Central Bank.

SECTION 225. Depreciation Allowance for Machinery. — For purposes of assessment, a depreciation allowance shall be made for machinery at a rate not exceeding five percent (5%) of its original cost or its replacement or reproduction cost, as the case may be, for each year of use: Provided, however, That the remaining value for all kinds of machinery shall be fixed at not less than twenty percent (20%) of such original, replacement, or reproduction cost for so long as the machinery is useful and in operation.

CHAPTER 3 — ASSESSMENT APPEALS

SECTION 226. Local Board of Assessment Appeals. — Any owner or person having legal interest in the property who is not satisfied with the action of the provincial, city or municipal assessor in the assessment of his property may, within sixty (60) days from the date of receipt of the written notice of assessment, appeal to the Board of Assessment Appeals of the provincial or city by filing a petition under oath in the form prescribed for the purpose, together with copies of the tax declarations and such affidavits or documents submitted in support of the appeal.

SECTION 227. Organization, Powers, Duties, and Functions of the Local Board of Assessment Appeals. — (a) The Board of Assessment Appeals of the province or city shall be composed of the Registrar of Deeds, as Chairman, the provincial or city prosecutor and the provincial, or city engineer as members, who shall serve as such in an ex officio capacity without additional compensation.

(c) The chairman of the Board shall have the power to designate any employee of the province or city to serve as secretary to the Board also without additional compensation.

(c) The chairman and members of the Board of Assessment Appeals of the province or city shall assume their respective positions without need of further appointment or special designations immediately upon effectivity of this Code. They shall take oath or affirmation of office in the prescribed form.

(d) In provinces and cities without a provincial or city engineer, the district engineer shall serve as member of the Board. In the absence of the Registrar of Deeds, or the provincial or city prosecutor, or the provincial or city engineer, or the district engineer, the persons performing their duties, whether in an acting capacity or as a duly designated officer-in-charge, shall automatically become the chairman or member, respectively, of the said Board, as the case may be.

SECTION 228. Meetings and Expenses of the Local Board of Assessment Appeals. — (a) The Board of Assessment Appeals of the province or city shall meet once a month and as often as may be necessary for the prompt disposition of appealed cases. No member of the Board shall be entitled to per diems or traveling expenses for his attendance in Board meetings, except when conducting an ocular inspection in connection with a case under appeal.

(b) All expenses of the Board shall be charged against the general fund of the province or city, as the case may be. The sanggunian concerned shall appropriate the necessary funds to enable the Board in their respective localities to operate effectively.

SECTION 229. Action by the Local Board of Assessment Appeals. — (a) The Board shall decide the appeal within one hundred twenty (120) days from the date of receipt of such appeal. The Board, after hearing, shall render its decision based on substantial evidence or such relevant evidence on record as a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support the conclusion.

(b) In the exercise of its appellate jurisdiction, the Board shall have the power to summon witnesses, administer oaths, conduct ocular inspection, take depositions, and issue subpoena and subpoena duces tecum. The proceedings of the Board shall be conducted solely for the purpose of ascertaining the facts without necessarily adhering to technical rules applicable in judicial proceedings.

(c) The secretary of the Board shall furnish the owner of the property or the person having legal interest therein and the provincial or city assessor with a copy of the decision of the Board. In case the provincial or city assessor concurs in the revision or the assessment, it shall be his duty to notify the owner of the property or the person having legal interest therein of such fact using the form prescribed for the purpose. The owner of the property or the person having legal interest therein or the assessor who is not satisfied with the decision of the Board, may, within thirty (30) days after receipt of the decision of said Board, appeal to the Central Board of Assessment Appeals, as herein provided. The decision of the Central Board shall be final and executory.

SECTION 230. Central Board of Assessment Appeals. — The Central Board of Assessment Appeals shall be composed of a chairman, and two (2) members to be appointed by the President, who shall serve for a term of seven (7) years, without reappointment. Of those first appointed, the chairman shall hold office for seven (7) years, one member for five (5) years, and the other member for three (3) years. Appointment to any vacancy shall be only for the unexpired portion of the term of the predecessor. In no case shall any member be appointed or designated in a temporary or acting capacity. The chairman and the members of the Board shall be Filipino citizens, at least forty (40) years old at the time of their appointment, and members of the Bar or Certified Public Accountants for at least ten (10) years immediately preceding their appointment. The chairman of the Board of Assessment Appeals shall have the salary grade equivalent to the rank of Director III under the Salary Standardization Law exclusive of allowances and other emoluments. The members of the Board shall have the salary grade equivalent to the rank of Director II under the Salary Standardization Law exclusive of allowances and other emoluments. The Board shall have appellate jurisdiction over all assessment cases decided by the Local Board of Assessment Appeals.

There shall be Hearing Officers to be appointed by the Central Board of Assessment Appeals pursuant to civil service laws, rules and regulations, one each for Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao, who shall hold office in Manila, Cebu City and Cagayan de Oro City, respectively, and who shall serve for a term of six (6) years, without reappointment until their successors have been appointed and qualified. The Hearing Officers shall have the same qualifications as that of the Judges of the Municipal Trial Courts.

The Central Board Assessment Appeals, in the performance of its powers and duties, may establish and organize staffs, offices, units, prescribe the titles, functions and duties of their members and adopt its own rules and regulations.

Unless otherwise provided by law, the annual appropriations for the Central Board of Assessment Appeals shall be included in the budget of the Department of Finance in the corresponding General Appropriations Act.

SECTION 231. Effect of Appeal on the Payment of Real Property Tax. — Appeal on assessments of real property made under the provisions of this Code shall, in no case, suspend the collection of the corresponding realty taxes on the property involved as assessed by the provincial or city assessor, without prejudice to subsequent adjustment depending upon the final outcome of the appeal.

CHAPTER 4. — IMPOSITION OF REAL PROPERTY TAX

SECTION 232. Power to Levy Real Property Tax. — A province or city or a municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area my levy an annual ad valorem tax on real property such as land, building, machinery, and other improvement not hereinafter specifically exempted.

SECTION 233. Rates of Levy. — A province or city or a municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area shall fix a uniform rate of basic real property tax applicable to their respective localities as follows:

(a) In the case of a province, at the rate not exceeding one percent (1%) of the assessed value of real property; and

(b) In the case of a city or a municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area, at the rate not exceeding two percent (2%) of the assessed value of real property.

SECTION 234. Exemptions from Real Property Tax. — The following are exempted from payment of the real property tax:

(a) Real property owned by the Republic of the Philippines or any of its political subdivisions except when the beneficial use thereof has been granted, for consideration or otherwise, to a taxable person;

(b) Charitable institutions, churches, parsonages or convents appurtenant thereto, mosques, non-profit or religious cemeteries and all lands, buildings, and improvements actually, directly, and exclusively used for religious, charitable or educational purposes;

(c) All machineries and equipment that are actually, directly and exclusively used by local water districts and government owned or controlled corporations engaged in the supply and distribution of water and/or generation and transmission of electric power;

(d) All real property owned by duly registered cooperatives as provided for under R.A. No. 6938; and

(e) Machinery and equipment used for pollution control and environmental protection.

Except as provided herein, any exemption from payment of real property tax previously granted to, or presently enjoyed by, all persons, whether natural or juridical, including all government-owned or controlled corporations are hereby withdrawn upon the effectivity of this Code.

CHAPTER 5. — SPECIAL LEVIES ON REAL PROPERTY

SECTION 235. Additional Levy on Real Property for the Special Education Fund. — A province or city, or a municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area, may levy and collect an annual tax of one percent (1%) on the assessed value of real property which shall be in addition to the basic real property tax. The proceeds thereof shall exclusively accrue to the Special Education Fund (SEF).

SECTION 236. Additional Ad Valorem Tax on Idle Lands. — A province or city, or a municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area, may levy an annual tax on idle lands at the rate not exceeding five percent (5%) of the assessed value of the property which shall be in addition to the basic real property tax.

SECTION 237. Idle Lands, Coverage. — For purposes of real property taxation, idle lands shall include the following: (a) Agricultural lands, more than one (1) hectare in area, suitable for cultivation, dairying, inland fishery, and other agricultural uses, one-half (1/2) of which remain uncultivated or unimproved by the owner of the property or person having legal interest therein. Agricultural lands planted to permanent or perennial crops with at least fifty (50) trees to a hectare shall not be considered idle lands. Lands actually used for grazing purposes shall likewise not be considered idle lands.

(b) Lands, other than agricultural, located in a city or municipality, more than one thousand (1,000) square meters in area one-half (1/2) of which remain unutilized or unimproved by the owner of the property or person having legal interest therein.

Regardless of land area, this Section shall likewise apply to residential lots in subdivisions duly approved by proper authorities, the ownership of which has been transferred to individual owners, who shall be liable for the additional tax: Provided, however, That individual lots of such subdivisions, the ownership of which has not been transferred to the buyer shall be considered as part of the subdivision, and shall be subject to the additional tax payable by subdivision owner or operator.

SECTION 238. Idle Lands Exempt from Tax. — A province or city or a municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area may exempt idle lands from the additional levy by reason of force majeure, civil disturbance, natural calamity or any cause or circumstance which physically or legally prevents the owner of the property or person having legal interest therein from improving, utilizing or cultivating the same.

SECTION 239. Listing of Idle Lands by the Assessor. — The provincial, city or municipal assessor shall make and keep an updated record of all idle lands located within his area of jurisdiction. For purposes of collection, the provincial, city or municipal assessor shall furnish a copy thereof to the provincial or city treasurer who shall notify, on the basis of such record, the owner of the property or person having legal interest therein of the imposition of the additional tax.

SECTION 240. Special Levy by Local Government Units. — A province, city or municipality may impose a special levy on the lands comprised within its territorial jurisdiction specially benefited by public works projects or improvements funded by the local government unit concerned: Provided, however, That the special levy shall not exceed sixty percent (60%) of the actual cost of such projects and improvements, including the costs of acquiring land and such other real property in connection therewith: Provided, further, That the special levy shall not apply to lands exempt from basic real property tax and the remainder of the land portions of which have been donated to the local government unit concerned for the construction of such projects or improvements.
SECTION 241. Ordinance Imposing a Special Levy. — A tax ordinance imposing a special levy shall describe with reasonable accuracy the nature, extent, and location of the public works projects or improvements to be undertaken, state the estimated cost thereof, specify the metes and bounds by monuments and lines and the number of annual installments for the payment of the special levy which in no case shall be less than five (5) nor more than ten (10) years. The sanggunian concerned shall not be obliged, in the apportionment and computation of the special levy, to establish a uniform percentage of all lands subject to the payment of the tax for the entire district, but it may fix different rates for different parts or sections thereof, depending on whether such land is more or less benefited by proposed work.

SECTION 242. Publication of Proposed Ordinance Imposing a Special Levy. — Before the enactment of an ordinance imposing a special levy, the sanggunian concerned shall conduct a public hearing thereon; notify in writing the owners of the real property to be affected or the persons having legal interest therein as to the date and place thereof and afford the latter the opportunity to express their positions or objections relative to the proposed ordinance.

SECTION 243. Fixing the Amount of Special Levy. — The special levy authorized herein shall be apportioned, computed, and assessed according to the assessed valuation of the lands affected as shown by the books of the assessor concerned, or its current assessed value as fixed by said assessor if the property does not appear of record in his books. Upon the effectivity of the ordinance imposing special levy, the assessor concerned shall forthwith proceed to determine the annual amount of special levy assessed against each parcel of land comprised within the area especially benefited and shall send to each landowner a written notice thereof by mail, personal service or publication in appropriate cases.

SECTION 244. Taxpayer's Remedies Against Special Levy. — Any owner of real property affected by a special levy or any person having a legal interest therein may, upon receipt of the written notice of assessment of the special levy, avail of the remedies provided for in Chapter 3, Title Two, Book II of this Code.

SECTION 245. Accrual of Special Levy. — The special levy shall accrue on the first day of the quarter next following the effectivity of the ordinance imposing such levy.

CHAPTER 6. — COLLECTION OF REAL PROPERTY TAX

SECTION 246. Date of Accrual of Tax. — The real property tax for any year shall accrue on the first day of January and from that date it shall constitute a lien on the property which shall be superior to any other lien, mortgage, or encumbrance of any kind whatsoever, and shall be extinguished only upon the payment of the delinquent tax.

SECTION 247. Collection of Tax. — The collection of the real property tax with interest thereon and related expenses, and the enforcement of the remedies provided for in this Title or any applicable laws, shall be the responsibility of the city or municipal treasurer concerned.

The city or municipal treasurer may deputize the barangay treasurer to collect all taxes on real property located in the barangay: Provided, That the barangay treasurer is properly bonded for the purpose: Provided, further, That the premium on the bond shall be paid by the city or municipal government concerned.

SECTION 248. Assessor to Furnish Local Treasurer with Assessment Roll. — The provincial, city or municipal assessor shall prepare and submit to the treasurer of the local government unit, on or before the thirty-first (31st) day of December each year, an assessment roll containing a list of all persons whose real properties have been newly assessed or reassessed and the values of such properties.

SECTION 249. Notice of Time for Collection of Tax. — The city or municipal treasurer shall, on or before the thirty-first (31st) day of January each year, in the case of the basic real property tax and the additional tax for the Special Education Fund (SEF) or any other date to be prescribed by the sanggunian concerned in the case of any other tax levied under this title, post the notice of the dates when the tax may be paid without interest at a conspicuous and publicly accessible place at the city or municipal hall. Said notice shall likewise be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the locality once a week for two (2) consecutive weeks.

SECTION 250. Payment of Real Property Taxes in Installments. — The owner of the real property or the person having legal interest therein may pay the basic real property tax and the additional tax for Special Education Fund (SEF) due thereon without interest in four (4) equal installments; the first installment to be due and payable on or before March Thirty-first (31st); the second installment, on or before June Thirty (30); the third installment, on or before September Thirty (30); and the last installment on or before December Thirty-first (31st), except the special levy the payment of which shall be governed by ordinance of the sanggunian concerned.

The date for the payment of any other tax imposed under this Title without interest shall be prescribed by the sanggunian concerned.

Payments of real property taxes shall first be applied to prior years delinquencies, interests, and penalties, if any, and only after said delinquencies are settled may tax payments be credited for the current period.

SECTION 251. Tax Discount for Advanced Prompt Payment. — If the basic real property tax and the additional tax accruing to the Special Education Fund (SEF) are paid in advance in accordance with the prescribed schedule of payment as provided under Section 250, the sanggunian concerned may grant a discount not exceeding twenty percent (20%) of the annual tax due.

SECTION 252. Payment Under Protest. — (a) No protest shall be entertained unless the taxpayer first pays the tax. There shall be annotated on the tax receipts the words “paid under protest”. The protest in writing must be filed within thirty (30) days from payment of the tax to the provincial, city treasurer or municipal treasurer, in the case of a municipality within Metropolitan Manila Area, who shall decide the protest within sixty (60) days from receipt.

(b) The tax or a portion thereof paid under protest, shall be held in trust by the treasurer concerned.

(c) In the event that the protest is finally decided in favor of the taxpayer, the amount or portion of the tax protested shall be refunded to the protestant, or applied as tax credit against his existing or future tax liability.

(d) In the event that the protest is denied or upon the lapse of the sixty day period prescribed in subparagraph (a), the taxpayer may avail of the remedies as provided for in Chapter 3, Title II, Book II of this Code.

SECTION 253. Repayment of Excessive Collections. — When an assessment of basic real property tax, or any other tax levied under this Title, is found to be illegal or erroneous and the tax is accordingly reduced or adjusted, the taxpayer may file a written claim for refund or credit for taxes and interests with the provincial or city treasurer within two (2) years from the date the taxpayer is entitled to such reduction or adjustment.

The provincial or city treasurer shall decide the claim for tax refund or credit within sixty (60) days from receipt thereof. In case the claim for tax refund or credit is denied, the taxpayer may avail of the remedies as provided in Chapter 3, Title II, Book II of this Code.

SECTION 254. Notice of Delinquency in the Payment of the Real Property

Tax. — (a) When the real property tax or any other tax imposed under this Title becomes delinquent, the provincial, city or municipal treasurer shall immediately cause a notice of the delinquency to be posted at the main hall and in a publicly accessible and conspicuous place in each barangay of the local government unit concerned. The notice of delinquency shall also be published once a week for two (2) consecutive weeks, in a newspaper of general circulation in the province, city, or municipality.

(b) Such notice shall specify the date upon which the tax became delinquent and shall state that personal property may be distrained to effect payment. It shall likewise state that any time before the distraint of personal property, payment of the tax with surcharges, interests and penalties may be made in accordance with the next following Section, and unless the tax, surcharges and penalties are paid before the expiration of the year for which the tax is due except when the notice of assessment or special levy is contested administratively or judicially pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 3, Title II, Book II of this Code, the delinquent real property will be sold at public auction, and the title to the property will be vested in the purchaser, subject, however, to the right of the delinquent owner of the property or any person having legal interest therein to redeem the property within one (1) year from the date of sale.

SECTION 255. Interests on Unpaid Real Property Tax. — In case of failure to pay the basic real property tax or any other tax levied under this Title upon the expiration of the periods as provided in Section 250, or when due, as the case may be, shall subject the taxpayer to the payment of interest at the rate of two percent (2%) per month on the unpaid amount or a fraction thereof, until the delinquent tax shall have been fully paid: Provided, however, That in no case shall the total interest on the unpaid tax or portion thereof exceed thirty-six (36) months.

SECTION 256. Remedies For The Collection Of Real Property Tax. — For the collection of the basic real property tax and nay other tax levied under this Title, the local government unit concerned may avail of the remedies by administrative action thru levy on real property or by judicial action.

SECTION 257. Local Governments Lien. — The basic real property tax and any other tax levied under this Title constitutes a lien on the property subject to tax, superior to all liens, charges or encumbrances in favor of any person, irrespective of the owner or possessor thereof, enforceable by administrative or judicial action, and may only be extinguished upon payment of the tax and the related interests and expenses.

SECTION 258. Levy on Real Property. — After the expiration of the time required to pay the basic real property tax or any other tax levied under this Title, real property subject to such tax may be levied upon through the issuance of a warrant on or before, or simultaneously with, the institution of the civil action for the collection of the delinquent tax. The provincial or city treasurer, or a treasurer of a municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area, as the case may be, when issuing a warrant of levy shall prepare a duly authenticated certificate showing the name of the delinquent owner of the property or person having legal interest therein, the description of the property, the amount of the tax due and the interest thereon. The warrant shall operate with the force of a legal execution throughout the province, city or a municipality, within the Metropolitan Manila Area. The warrant shall be mailed to or served upon the delinquent owner of the real property or person having legal interest therein, or in case he is out of the country or cannot be located, the administrator or occupant of the property. At the same time, written notice of the levy with the attached warrant shall be mailed to or served upon the assessor and the Registrar of Deeds of the province, city or municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area where the property is located, who shall annotate the levy on the tax declaration and certificate of title of the property, respectively.

The levying officer shall submit a report on the levy to the sanggunian concerned within ten (10) days after receipt of the warrant by the owner of the property or person having legal interest therein.

SECTION 259. Penalty for Failure to Issue and Execute Warrant. — Without prejudice to criminal prosecution under the Revised Penal Code and other applicable laws, any local treasurer or his deputy who fails to issue or execute the warrant of levy within one (1) year from the time the tax becomes delinquent or within thirty (30) days from the date of the issuance thereof, or who is found guilty of abusing the exercise thereof in an administrative or judicial proceeding shall be dismissed from the service.

SECTION 260. Advertisement and Sale. — Within thirty (30) days after service of the warrant of levy, the local treasurer shall proceed to publicly advertise for sale or auction the property or a usable portion thereof as may be necessary to satisfy the tax delinquency and expenses of sale. The advertisement shall be effected by posting a notice at the main entrance of the provincial, city or municipal building, and in a publicly accessible and conspicuous place in the barangay where the real property is located, and by publication once a week for two (2) weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the province, city or municipality where the property is located. The advertisement shall specify the amount of the delinquent tax, the interest due thereon and expenses of sale, the date and place of sale, the name of the owner of the real property or person having legal interest therein, and a description of the property to be sold. At any time before the date fixed for the sale, the owner of the real property or person having legal interest therein may stay the proceedings by paying the delinquent tax, the interest due thereon and the expenses of sale. The sale shall be held either at the main entrance of the provincial, city or municipal building, or on the property to be sold, or at any other place as specified in the notice of the sale.

Within thirty (30) days after the sale, the local treasurer or his deputy shall make a report of the sale to the sanggunian concerned, and which shall form part of his records. The local treasurer shall likewise prepare and deliver to the purchaser a certificate of sale which shall contain the name of the purchaser, a description of the property sold, the amount of the delinquent tax, the interest due thereon, the expenses of sale and a brief description of the proceedings: Provided, however, That proceeds of the sale in excess of the delinquent tax, the interest due thereon, and the expenses of sale shall be remitted to the owner of the real property or person having legal interest therein.

The local treasurer may, by ordinance duly approved, advance an amount sufficient to defray the costs of collection thru the remedies provided for in this Title, including the expenses of advertisement and sale.
SECTION 261. Redemption of Property Sold. — Within one (1) year from the date of sale, the owner of the delinquent real property or person having legal interest therein, or his representative, shall have the right to redeem the property upon payment to the local treasurer of the amount of the delinquent tax, including the interest due thereon, and the expenses of sale from the date of delinquency to the date of sale, plus interest of not more than two percent (2%) per month on the purchase price from the date of sale to the date of redemption. Such payment shall invalidate the certificate of sale issued to the purchaser and the owner of the delinquent real property or person having legal interest therein shall be entitled to a certificate of redemption which shall be issued by the local treasurer or his deputy.

From the date of sale until the expiration of the period of redemption, the delinquent real property shall remain in possession of the owner or person having legal interest therein who shall be entitled to the income and other fruits thereof.

The local treasurer or his deputy, upon receipt from the purchaser of the certificate of sale, shall forthwith return to the latter the entire amount paid by him plus interest of not more than two percent (2%) per month. Thereafter, the property shall be free from lien of such delinquent tax, interest due thereon and expenses of sale.

SECTION 262. Final Deed to Purchaser. — In case the owner or person having legal interest fails to redeem the delinquent property as provided herein, the local treasurer shall execute a deed conveying to the purchaser said property, free from lien of the delinquent tax, interest due thereon and expenses of sale. The deed shall briefly state the proceedings upon which the validity of the sale rests.

SECTION 263. Purchase of Property By the Local Government Units for Want of Bidder. — In case there is no bidder for the real property advertised for sale as provided herein, the real property tax and the related interest and costs of sale the local treasurer conducting the sale shall purchase the property in behalf of the local government unit concerned to satisfy the claim and within two (2) days thereafter shall make a report of his proceedings which shall be reflected upon the records of his office. It shall be the duty of the Registrar of Deeds concerned upon registration with his office of any such declaration of forfeiture to transfer the title of the forfeited property to the local government unit concerned without the necessity of an order from a competent court.

Within one (1) year from the date of such forfeiture, the taxpayer or any of his representative, may redeem the property by paying to the local treasurer the full amount of the real property tax and the related interest and the costs of sale. If the property is not redeemed as provided herein, the ownership thereof shall be vested on the local government unit concerned.

SECTION 264. Resale of Real Estate Taken for Taxes, Fees, or Charges. — The sanggunian concerned may, by ordinance duly approved, and upon notice of not less than twenty (20) days, sell and dispose of the real property acquired under the preceding section at public auction. The proceeds of the sale shall accrue to the general fund of the local government unit concerned.

SECTION 265. Further Distraint or Levy. — Levy may be repeated if necessary until the full amount due, including all expenses, is collected.

SECTION 266. Collection of Real Property Tax Through the Courts. — The local government unit concerned may enforce the collection of the basic real property tax or any other tax levied under this Title by civil action in any court of competent jurisdiction. The civil action shall be filed by the local treasurer within the period prescribed in Section 270 of this Code.

SECTION 267. Action Assailing Validity of Tax Sale. — No court shall entertain any action assailing the validity or any sale at public auction of real property or rights therein under this Title until the taxpayer shall have deposited with the court the amount for which the real property was sold, together with interest of two percent (2%) per month from the date of sale to the time of the institution of the action. The amount so deposited shall be paid to the purchaser at the auction sale if the deed is declared invalid but it shall be returned to the depositor if the action fails.

Neither shall any court declare a sale at public auction invalid by reason or irregularities or informalities in the proceedings unless the substantive rights of the delinquent owner of the real property or the person having legal interest therein have been impaired.

SECTION 268. Payment of Delinquent Taxes on Property Subject of Controversy. — In any action involving the ownership or possession of, or succession to, real property, the court may, motu propio or upon representation of the provincial, city, or municipal treasurer or his deputy, award such ownership, possession, or succession to any party to the action upon payment to the court of the taxes with interest due on the property and all other costs that may have accrued, subject to the final outcome of the action.

SECTION 269. Treasurer to Certify Delinquencies Remaining Uncollected. — The provincial, city or municipal treasurer or their deputies shall prepare a certified list of all real property tax delinquencies which remained uncollected or unpaid for at least one (1) year in his jurisdiction, and a statement of the reason or reasons for such non-collection or non-payment, and shall submit the same to the sanggunian concerned on or before December thirty-first (31st) of the year immediately succeeding the year in which the delinquencies were incurred, with a request for assistance in the enforcement of the remedies for collection provided herein.

SECTION 270. Periods Within Which To Collect Real Property Taxes. — The basic real property tax and any other tax levied under this Title shall be collected within five (5) years from the date they become due. No action for the collection of the tax, whether administrative or judicial, shall be instituted after the expiration of such period. In case of fraud or intent to evade payment of the tax, such action may be instituted for the collection of the same within ten (10) years from the discovery of such fraud or intent to evade payment.

The period of prescription within which to collect shall be suspended for the time during which:

(1) The local treasurer is legally prevented from collecting the tax;

(2) The owner of the property or the person having legal interest therein requests for reinvestigation and executes a waiver in writing before the expiration of the period within which to collect; and

(3) The owner of the property or the person having legal interest therein is out of the country or otherwise cannot be located.

CHAPTER 7. — DISPOSITION OF PROCEEDS

SECTION 271. Distribution of Proceeds. — The proceeds of the basic real property tax, including interest thereon, and proceeds from the use, lease or disposition, sale or redemption of property acquired at a public auction in accordance with the provisions of this Title by the province or city or a municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area shall be distributed as follows:

(a) In the case of provinces:

(1) Province — Thirty-five percent (35%) shall accrue to the general fund;

(2) Municipality — Forty percent (40%) to the general fund of the municipality where the property is located; and

(3) Barangay — Twenty-five percent (25%) shall accrue to the barangay where the property is located.

(b) In the case of cities:

(1) City — Seventy percent (70%) shall accrue to the general fund of the city; and

(2) Thirty percent (30%) shall be distributed among the component barangays of the cities where the property is located in the following manner:

(i) Fifty percent (50%) shall accrue to the barangay where the property is located;

(ii) Fifty percent (50%) shall accrue equally to all component barangays of the city; and

(c) In the case of a municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area:

(1) Metropolitan Manila Authority — Thirty-five percent (35%) shall accrue to the general fund of the authority;

(2) Municipality — Thirty-five percent (35% shall accrue to the general fund of the municipality where the property is located;

(3) Barangays — Thirty percent (30%) shall be distributed among the component barangays of the municipality where the property is located in the following manner:

(i) Fifty percent (50%) shall accrue to the barangay where the property is located;

(ii) Fifty percent (50%) shall accrue equally to all component barangays of the municipality.

(d) The share of each barangay shall be released, without need of any further action, directly to the barangay treasurer on a quarterly basis within five (5) days after the end of each quarter and shall not be subject to any lien or holdback for whatever purpose.

SECTION 272. Application of Proceeds of the Additional One Percent SEF Tax. — The proceeds from the additional one percent (1%) tax on real property accruing to the Special Education Fund (SEF) shall be automatically released to the local school boards: Provided, That, in case of provinces, the proceeds shall be divided equally between the provincial and municipal school boards: Provided, however, That the proceeds shall be allocated for the operation and maintenance of public schools, construction and repair of school buildings, facilities and equipment, educational research, purchase of books and periodicals, and sports development as determined and approved by the Local School Board.

SECTION 273. Proceeds of the Tax on Idle Lands. — The proceeds of the additional real property tax on idle lands shall accrue to the respective general fund of the province or city where the land is located. In the case of a municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area, the proceeds shall accrue equally to the Metropolitan Manila Authority and the municipality where the land is located.

SECTION 274. Proceeds of the Special Levy. — The proceeds of the special levy on lands benefited by public works, projects and other improvements shall accrue to the general fund of the local government unit which financed such public works, projects or other improvements.

CHAPTER 8. — SPECIAL PROVISIONS

SECTION 275. General Assessment Revision; Expenses Incident Thereto. — The sanggunian of provinces, cities and municipalities within the Metropolitan Manila Area shall provide the necessary appropriations to defray the expenses incident to the general revision of real property assessment.

All expenses incident to a general revision of real property assessment shall, by ordinance of the sangguniang panlalawigan, be apportioned between the province and the municipality on the basis of the taxable area of the municipality concerned.

SECTION 276. Condonation or Reduction of Real Property Tax and Interest. — In case of a general failure of crops or substantial decrease in the price of agricultural or agribased products, or calamity in any province, city or municipality, the sanggunian concerned, by ordinance passed prior to the first (1st) day of January of any year and upon recommendation of the Local Disaster Coordinating Council, may condone or reduce, wholly or partially, the taxes and interest thereon for the succeeding year or years in the city or municipality affected by the calamity.

SECTION 277. Condonation or Reduction of Tax by the President of the Philippines. — The President of the Philippines may, when public interest so requires, condone or reduce the real property tax and interest for any year in any province or city or a municipality within the Metropolitan Manila Area.

SECTION 278. Duty of Registrar of Deeds and Notaries Public to Assist the Provincial, City or Municipal Assessor. — It shall be the duty of the Registrar of Deeds and notaries public to furnish the provincial, city or municipal assessor with copies of all contracts selling, transferring, or otherwise conveying, leasing, or mortgaging real property received by, or acknowledged before them.

SECTION 279. Insurance Companies to Furnish Information. — Insurance companies are hereby required to furnish the provincial, city or municipal assessor copies of any contract or policy insurance on buildings, structures, and improvements insured by them or such other documents which may be necessary for the proper assessment thereof.

SECTION 280. Fees in Court Actions. — All court actions, criminal or civil, instituted at the instance of the provincial, city or municipal treasurer or assessor under the provisions of this Code, shall be exempt from the payment of court and sheriff's fees.

SECTION 281. Fees in Registration of Papers or Documents on Sale of Delinquent Real Property to Province, City or Municipality. — All certificates, documents, and papers covering the sale of delinquent property to the province, city or municipality, if registered in the Registry of Property, shall be exempt from the documentary stamp tax and registration fees.
SECTION 282. Real Property Assessment Notices or Owner's Copies of Tax Declarations to be Exempt from Postal Charges or Fees. — All real property assessment notices or owner's copies of tax declaration sent through the mails by the assessor shall be exempt from the payment of postal charges or fees.

SECTION 283. Sale and Forfeiture Before Effectivity of Code. — Tax delinquencies incurred, and sales and forfeitures of delinquent real property effected, before the effectivity of this Code shall be governed by the provisions of applicable laws then in force.

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