Program for Persons Over Age 60 and Veterans to Provide Volunteer Service for Reductions in Real Property Tax Obligations (Work-Off Abatement)

State

Massachusetts

Year

2015

Variations in Receipt of Benefit

No Variation in Receipt of Benefits

Benefit Type

Credit

Benefit

Participating cities and towns may reduce the real property tax bills of taxpayers over 60 years of age and veterans (or the spouses depending on the circumstance) up to a credit of $1,000 in a given tax year in exchange for their volunteer services to the municipality.

How is Benefit Disbursed

Credit to the property tax bill

Eligible Property Type

Residential

Characteristics of Eligible Property

Real property of eligible persons is considered eligible property.

Eligibility Criteria

Age

Homeowner

Veteran

Surviving Spouse

Other Criteria

Description of Eligibility Criteria

To qualify for the program, the applicant must be the property owner and must have acquired ownership before the work began and the abatement was applied, or, in the case of a trust, must have gained legal title either on the January 1 assessment date or at the time the volunteer work began. Qualifying seniors must be at least 60 years old. To qualify for the veterans program the applicant must be a veteran or the spouse of a qualifying veteran, if that veteran is deceased or is disabled from a service connected disability.

Local Option in Adoption of Program

Local government must take action to opt in

Local Option Regarding Program Features

Local option regarding program features

State Funding for Local Tax Loss

Local government covers all of its tax loss

Description of State Funding for Tax Loss

State statutes do not provide for state funding for local tax loss.

Record ID

MA107_RR15

Footnotes

Volunteer senior citizens cannot receive a credit for their services at an hourly rate higher than the state’s current minimum wage. This credit is given in addition to any property tax exemption or abatement to which the individual would otherwise be entitled. A city or town, by vote of its legislative body, subject to its charter, may adjust the exemption in this clause by: (1) allowing an approved representative, for persons physically unable, to provide such services to the city or town; or (2) allowing the maximum reduction of the real property tax bill to be based on 125 volunteer service hours in a given tax year, rather than $1,000.

Sources

Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 59, § 5K;
Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 59, § 5N (in effect for 2015)

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