Dynamic Securities Analytics, Inc. (DSA) in Tampa says it has discovered an algorithm and data-mining system that can detect properties that are fraudulently obtaining tax breaks. The system looks at properties and can identify which ones are receiving the property tax homestead exemption by error, fraud or oversight.
“In Florida and some other states, if you own a home and you use that home as your primary residence, you can qualify for the homestead tax exemption,” says Alison Jimenez, president of DSA. “The exemption usually saves people about $800 a year in property taxes, however, there are a lot of people who are getting the exemption when they don’t use the property as their primary residence. ”
Jimenez says that by identifying these properties that should not be receiving the homestead exemption and revoking such tax breaks, counties and municipalities can recoup funds.
“Counties and municipalities are really scrounging because the property values have decreased, which brings tax revenues down,” Jimenez says. “With so many people relying on county health departments or affordable after-school care programs it’s hard on the budget. This system can help counties recoup money that they wouldn’t have generated otherwise. ”
Not only does the system detect properties that are improperly receiving tax exemptions, but Jimenez says she can calculate how much tax revenue can be recovered. She goes on to say that property appraisers are aware of this issue, but their offices don’t have the manpower to fix it.
“We have automated the process of detecting these fraudulent exemptions, and our methodology gets the answers much quicker and efficiently than the current system,” Jimenez says.
Jimenez recently filed for a US patent on her method and plans to offer it to local counties as well as other homestead states soon.
Writer: Kimberly Patterson
Source: Alison Jimenez, Dynamic Securities Analytics, Inc