Hello diesel man,
In the state of CA, there is no statute of limitations which applies to business personal property tax or any type of tax, if no return was ever filed for a particular year.
So if 30 years ago you failed to file a personal property declaration, by law the state of CA is still allowed to assess and collect the taxes that would have been due for that year.
I realize it becomes very difficult if not impossible to go back 30 years and prove whether or not you actually filed or paid this tax, but unfortunately the law allows them to go back indefinitely.
Thank you diesel
Hello again diesel,
Unfortunately I do not have the exact code section of the CA law that points out the time period they have to assess these taxes. I just know from years of experience this happens to be the case in CA. And actually the same rule applies in almost every state, in a case where a declaration has never been filed.
As far as no longer living in the state, the state of CA could obtain a judgment against you in court the same as nay other creditor, which would allow them to garnish wages in the state where you are now employed. Whether or not they would actually pursue that is hard to say. You have to keep in mind that right now the state of CA is having extreme financial difficulties, which is the likely reason they are reaching back as far as they can go to try and collect any bit of taxes they think they can. If they have not contacted you prior to this time, then my guess would be that the debt either was not high enough to make it worth their while to go through the collection efforts, and right now they may just be sending out correspondence in the hopes of at least getting partial payments or compliance from some taxpayers with past due taxes. But I don't see that it necessarily means they would actually pursue this beyond sending you written correspondence requesting payment be made.
Yes, I realize that property taxes are a county taxing issue, but the laws for collection are governed by the state.
And the fact that this is a county issue rather than state tax also makes it less likely that they would actually go through further collection attempts other than just sending you correspondence requesting that you pay what is due. The smaller county governments just do not typically pursue collection through courts if you are no longer a resident of the state.