Scam: Assessor's Office Warns of Impostors

Solicitors are asking taxpayers to hire them to fix property value errors. Here's what you need to know.

Double-check all calls from the Cook County Assessor's Office because the contact may be a scam, a release from the office warns

People claiming to work at the assessor's office are calling residents, saying they have missing exemptions. The scammers then ask taxpayers to hire them to file Certificates of Error on their behalf. 

The certificate changes a property's assessed value for a past year, correcting the tax bill after the assessment is finalized. 

Kelley Quinn, communications director for the assessor’s office, said real employees never solicit taxpayers. Many of these so-called tax reps tell people they can get residents more money. 

"What they don't tell you is... they take 30 to 40 percent of that amount," Quinn said. "The best thing people should be doing if they're a homeowner is making sure they've been getting all the proper exemptions."

Cook County Assessor Joseph Berrios said residents do not need representation for a Certificate of Error. The forms can be downloaded from the assessor's website or call 312-443-7550 to request forms by mail. 


—by Sarah Flagg

Tim F January 17, 2013 at 03:17 PM
The assessed valuation of homes by the Crook County Assessor is a scam
Debra January 17, 2013 at 10:47 PM
FYI to residents: Please be aware of another swindle, this one most recent, and quite dangerous to seniors. In Tinley there were two unknown females posing as Jehovah Witness types who rang the doorbell of an elderly friend, then aggressively pushed their way through the front door, and inside his home. The sole purpose of getting money. Once inside the home, they refused to leave until they got cash. The last incident was the second time these women worked our area. The difference is that these women do not distribute any literature as Jehovah’s always do. Who knows who they are, but they are very aggressive and insist on coming inside the home. If you have a senior family member or friend living here, etc. please make them aware of this, to not open the door to strangers, and to use CAUTION if confronted or surprised at the door.
Mike Fangman January 18, 2013 at 04:50 AM
Tim, if you don't like property taxes, don't drive on a public road.
NANCY GRACE January 18, 2013 at 12:55 PM
Debra it's called a gypsy scam
Debra January 18, 2013 at 06:26 PM
Nancy, In the incidents that I refer to, the offenders are not Gypsies. Gypsies are of Yugoslavian, Romanian, Russian, Polish and Hungarian descent, often mistakenly described by victims as "Latin/Hispanic” and "foreign-speaking" In these recent incidents, the offenders were of African-American descent. Source: http://www.policemag.com/channel/gangs/articles/2001/06/gypsies-kings-of-con.aspx


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