To summarize this section, aside from a few late payment allowances, local government is not going to do anything for commercial, industrial or investment-grade real estate, without a fight. 

The following is a list of efforts by taxing authorities to bring a slight measure of relief to taxpayers that have experienced losses due to Coronavirus. This list will be updated daily, or as more information becomes available. Meanwhile, taxpayers are advised that all tax payments must be made as required. Failure to make timely tax payments may result in penalties. 

Cook County, Illinois: The Assessor’s office has reopened and is now accepting appeals.

Cook County Assessor Kaegi has formulated a program that will grant temporary tax breaks to property owners.The details are as follows:

South Suburban reassessment continues; other property values will be examined for COVID-19-related adjustments.

“This is an unprecedented crisis and we’re taking necessary steps to address it,” said Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi. “In view of the state and federal governments’ declaration of Illinois and Cook County as major disaster areas, and the pandemic’s toll on markets and property values, we are adjusting assessments to reflect this reality. To do so for only one portion of the county would unfairly shift the tax burden and create an inequitable system.”

Cook County is reassessed triennially, which means one-third of the county is reassessed each year. In 2020, the south and west townships of Chicago are scheduled to be reassessed and this work will continue. While properties in some south suburban townships have already received reassessment notices, those which have not will receive notices that reflect estimated economic effects of COVID-19 on property values.

North suburban and Chicago portions of Cook County, which are not scheduled for reassessment, as well as properties located in south and west suburban townships which have already received reassessment notices, will have their property values reviewed for estimated effects of COVID-19 following the appeal process. Property owners are not required to appeal in order to receive the COVID-19 review and adjustment for eligible properties.

The end of this release has a summary of changes to both the reassessment, review, and appeal processes.
“We know property values were affected by the events of 9/11 and the 2008 housing crisis,” said Assessor Kaegi. “We’re already seeing the effects of this global health crisis on hiring, income, and construction – all of which dovetail with real estate values. Property owners should know we’re taking these circumstances into account. It’s the right thing to do.”

Because Cook County tax bills reflect the assessments of the previous year, any adjustments to property values this year will not be reflected until the second-installment tax bill received in the summer of 2021.

Summary of changes to reassessment, review, and appeal processes

South and Western Suburbs

Property values for the south and western suburbs will reflect the impact of the pandemic on real estate markets in accordance with the disaster declaration and corresponding changes in value.

For River Forest, Riverside, Oak Park, Palos, and Calumet:

  • All properties located in these townships already received reassessment notices as part of the scheduled 2020 reassessment process.
  • The values on these reassessment notices do not include any adjustments based on COVID-19.
  • Appeals for these properties can be filed until May 1st. Any appeals that have already been filed will be processed and do not need to be re-submitted.
  • The CCAO will mail updates to all properties about their property’s COVID-19 adjustment. No action or appeal is necessary for eligible properties to receive this adjustment.

For Berwyn, Lemont, Lyons, Worth, Stickney, Orland, Cicero, Proviso, Thornton, Bremen, Rich, and Bloom:

  • All properties in these south and western suburbs will receive reassessment notices this year.
  • This notice will include information about adjustments to values due to COVID-19’s impact on the market. No action or appeal is necessary in order for properties to receive a market adjustment.
  • Appeals for these properties can be filed after these reassessment notices are mailed. Dates will be posted at CookCountyAssessor.com.

North Suburbs and Chicago

In non-triennial assessment areas, the CCAO would typically only reassess properties that have permits or other special applications. The north suburbs and the City of Chicago are not part of this year’s triennial reassessment.

For Evanston, Norwood Park, Rogers Park, New Trier, and Barrington:

  • Some properties have already received reassessment notices due to permits or other special applications.
  • Appeals for these properties can be filed until May 1st. Any appeals that have already been filed will be processed and do not need to be re-submitted.
  • Information about adjustments to assessed values based on estimated COVID-19 effects will be sent to all eligible property owners, regardless of whether they filed an appeal, after the appeal deadline.

For all other townships in the North Suburbs and Chicago:

  • Appeal deadlines for north suburban and Chicago properties will be posted at CookCountyAssessor.com.
  • Reassessment notices for these townships, with recent permits or special applications, do not include value adjustments due to the COVID-19 market impact.
  • Information about adjustments to assessed values based on estimated COVID-19 effects for eligible properties will be sent to property owners, regardless of whether they filed an appeal, after the appeal deadline.

The second installment 2019 Cook County tax bills is due August 3, 2020 but can be paid just prior to October 1, without penalty.

State of Illinois: Lawmakers have passed a bill that will waive property tax interest penalties for 120 days in any county (except Cook County which passed a similar ordinance).