AVOID PENALTIES

UNDERSTANDING POSTMARKS

Property tax payments must be received or United States Postal Service (USPS) postmarked by the delinquency date to avoid penalties. Otherwise, the payment is delinquent and penalties will be imposed in accordance with State law.

UNSECURED (PERSONAL) PROPERTY TAXES

If we receive your payment after 5:00 p.m. Pacific Time on August 31 or your payment is USPS postmarked after August 31, we will impose a 10 percent penalty plus a $20 Notice of Enforcement collection cost.  For example, if the amount of tax due is $2,000, we will impose a 10 percent penalty of $200 plus a $20 Notice of Enforcement collection cost (total $220).

Starting the first day of the third month after the delinquency date, we will also impose an additional $29 Notice of Lien collection cost and penalties of 1.5 percent per month until the taxes are paid in full.

WHAT TO LOOK FOR

Postmarks are imprints the USPS applies to letters, flats, and parcels to reflect the date, name, state, and zip code of the USPS office that accepted custody of the mail. The postmark is generally applied either by machine or by hand, with cancellation bars and is primarily used to prevent postage from being re-used.

Taxpayers who send their payments by mail are cautioned that the USPS only postmarks certain mail depending on the type of postage used. Additionally, the USPS may not postmark mail on the same day it is deposited by a taxpayer.

MAIL THAT IS POSTMARKED

STANDARD POSTAGE STAMPS
Stamps purchased and affixed to mail as evidence of the payment of postage.

MAIL THAT IS NOT POSTMARKED – PERMIT IMPRINT

If you use these types of postage, the USPS will not postmark your mail. We will impose a 10 percent penalty and a $10 cost, if applicable, if we do not receive your mailed payment by the delinquency date.

METERED MAIL
Mail on which postage is printed directly on an envelope or label by a postage machine licensed by the USPS. Many private companies use these types of postage machines.

PRE-CANCELED STAMP
Stamps sold through a private vendor, such as stamps.com®.

AUTOMATED POSTAL CENTER (APC) STAMPS
Stamps, with or without a date, purchased from machines located within a USPS.

PERMIT IMPRINT
Pre-sorted mail used by bill pay services, such as online home banking.