Tax Abatement

In accordance with the Virginia Code (58.1-3222) and the James City County Code (Sec. 20-4.1), property owners may be eligible for a real estate tax adjustment if they have been unable to use their home or a building for more than 30 days due to damage by a fortuitous happening beyond the control of the owner. The adjustment is based on the time period the building is unfit for use or occupancy.


To qualify, property owners must meet all of the following criteria:
  • The destruction or damage to the building decreases its assessed value by $500 or more
  • The damage causes the building to be unfit for use or occupancy for 30 days or more
  • The owner of the property files a Real Estate Tax Abatement Application (PDF) within 6 months from the date of the damage
Application Process
All requests for real estate tax abatements should be made by filing a Real Estate Tax Abatement Application. Submission of the application to the Real Estate Assessment Division will be followed by an initial inspection by Building Safety and Permits to determine that the building is unfit for use and habitation. It is the responsibility of the property owner to notify the Division when the building has been made fit for use and habitation.

If the application is approved after the follow-up inspection, an adjusted tax bill will be computed according to the ratio which the portion of the year the building was fit for use, occupancy and enjoyment bears to the entire year. A revised bill will be issued by the Treasurer.