Adding, Changing, or Removing Standard Exemptions

Last Revised:  May 28, 2010

The Account Master Summary screen is used to add or remove standard exemptions, such as Homestead, Over 65, Veteran, Disabled, and Exempt.   


To do this ...

Use this screen ...

Adding, Changing, or Removing Standard Exemptions

Account Master Summary

Adding, Changing, or Removing Special Exemptions

Special Exemption

Setting Deferral Dates

Owner Detail

Adding and Removing Total Exemptions

Account Master Summary

Setting the HB 336 Exemption

Property Value Detail

Adding Partial Exemptions

Owner Detail

The following user entitlements must be set for each user who needs to view, add or change exemptions on the Account Master screen. They are part of the Make Value and Levy Account Master Changes and View Only Major Screens tasks.

Users having any job can view this screen. Changes can be made with the CAD Changes Save and Calc AG Rollback job.  See Tasks, Entitlements, and Jobs for more information.


ACT8002: Allow users to view the Account Master screens.

PRIOR_YEAR_BUILD: Allow users to click the Prior Year button

ACCTM_SAVE_AND_CALC_BUTTON: Allow users to click the Save and Calculate button

ACCTM_CHNG_DELQ_DATE_BUTTON: Allow users to click the Change Delinquency Date button and make changes to the dates.

ACCTM_ACCOUNT_DETAIL_UPDATE: Make changes on the Account Master Account Detail screen

ACCTM_OWNER_DETAIL_UPDATE: Allow users to change and insert information on the Owner Detail tab. This includes the owner and exemption flags (HOM, O65, DRH, VET)  on the Summary tab.

ACCTM_JURISDICTIONS_UPDATE: Allow users to change and insert information on the Jurisdictions tab. This includes the jurisdiction fields on the Summary tab.

ACCTM_EXEMPTIONS_UPDATE: Allow users to change and insert information on the Special Exemptions tab. Includes the fields on the Summary tab as well.

Set the following client preferences:

ROUND_VALUE_FACTOR: If you want exemption values rounded to the nearest $5.00 or $10.00, set this to 5 or 10.  If you do not want any rounding, set it to 1. This client preference is also used for taxable value amounts.

ADJUSTMENT_REFUND_TU,  ESCROW_DA_TU: To use refund money to pay off levy increases caused by adjustments, enter the escrow or refund tax units  (separated by comma) from which funds will be taken.

ADJ_REFUND_STATUS: To have refunds created by levy adjustments placed on hold automatically, set to OH. On hold refunds can be transferred to pay levy due as a results of an another adjustment.  To not have these refunds set on hold, it is best to expire the client preference.

ADJREF_OH_NAMECHANGE_EXISTS, ADJREF_OH_REF_EXISTS_SAMEYEAR, ADJREF_OH_REF_LARGERTHAN_1PAY, ADJREF_OH_REF_FOR_MULTIPAY: Set to Y to put adjustment refunds on hold (OH) at the time of the adjustment. To have these preferences take effect, ADJ_REFUND_STATUS must be expired.

CREATE_ADJUSTMENT_RECORDS: If this is set to N at the time an adjustment was created, any refunds generated by the adjustment will be put in the normal tax units, not the 8000 series of refund units.

ACT8006_SHOW_VETERAN_NULL:  Enter Y to leave the V in HOVDFAER blank if the account has no Veteran exemption; enter N to show a 0.

CALCULATE_LEVY_YEAR:  If this is set to a prior year, you cannot recalculate levy for the current or future year. You can make the changes on the Account Master screens, but the Save and Calculate button will be disabled. You can use the Save (F10) button but this will not recalculate the levy.

MOVE_ADJUSTMENT_TO_OWNER: Set to Y to allow adjustment refunds to be assigned to the owner even if an alternate payer made the original payment. Set to N to keep the refund recipient and the payer the same.  

SMOOTH_DATES: Set to Y to extend due dates for all units even if only one unit had a levy change that required it. The account must be fully paid at the time of the change or a new unit is added to an account. If the account is not fully paid, only the paid unit having the levy increase will have the due date changed. Set to N to change the due date on only the single paid unit.   This is valid starting with the 2005 tax year.

SMOOTH_UNPAID_UNITS: Enter Y to allow unpaid units to have due dates extended if a paid unit has a levy increase. SMOOTH_DATES must be set to Y for this to take effect.  Enter N to allow just the unit with the levy increase to have an extended date. The default is N.

REFUND_PI_SWITCH: Set to Y to allow penalty & interest to be refunded; set to N to allow just levy to be refunded.

FRZ_ADJ_REFUND_TU: Enter the tax unit to use to store adjustment refunds on accounts with frozen levy.  This can be the same unit as used for ADJUSTMENT_REFUND_TU.

REVISION_CODE_REQUIRED: Set to Y to require the Revision Code field to be filled in on the Property Value tab before you press Save and Calculate Levy; set to N to not require this.  Whatever is entered in this field is also put on the Revision field of the Receivable screen.

DEPCTL_OPERATOR: Enter a generic name to be put on deposit control records for RF deposits.  Expire this preference to use the user's login name.

HOMESTEAD_CAP: Homestead exemptions are calculated on and subtracted from capped value instead of gross value. Set yes (Y) or no (N).

CAP_WITHOUT_HOMESTEAD: Set to Y to allow a capped exclusion to be calculated even if the account has no homestead exemption. Set to N to require the homestead exemption. If set to N, a CAP exemption will still appear as a special exemption, but the amount will not be considered when calculating levy.  This is needed to balance to the appraisal district.

USE_APPORT: Set to Y to force users to use the Jurisdiction screen in the Account Master to make all value changes. The default setting is N, which allows users to make changes in the Property Value or Jurisdiction screens. Exemptions are calculated based on the value in the Property Value screen. If the value of the prim_juris is lower than values for other units in the Jurisdiction screen, the exemptions are calculated as if the apport percentage is 100%. If the value of the prim_juris is higher than values for other units, exemptions are calculated using the apport percentage of the prim_juris.

PROCESS_WRITEOFF: This controls whether uncollectable levy amounts are considered when re-calculating after a levy adjustment. Most tax offices will set this to N (the default), which means that the fully calculated levy as it was before the write off will be used as the 'base levy' for adjustments ('base levy' +/-  levy change amount .= new levy after adjustment  Set to Y to include uncollectable amounts when recalculating levy (levy after write off +/- levy change amount = new levy after adjustment. This new levy +/- uncollectable levy =  fully calculated levy as it would be without the write off). Regardless of the preference setting, the amount in the uncollectable levy field does not change.

WRITEOFF_ADJ_REFUND_TU: Enter the 8xxx unit in which to store refunds generated from written off accounts. The default is 8005.

EXCLUSION_CODES: Enter the exemption codes that you want to display in the Exclusion column of the Receivable screen. The values for these exclusions will not be included in the appraised values of properties. The default is 'OSP,CAP'.

If an account has been written off  you will get a warning message if you try to make a levy change on the Account Master screen.

The Save and Calculate button on the Account Master Summary screen apportions the exemption values according to the values of the individual tax units.   Local option percentage exemptions are calculated by multiplying the percentage times the unit's apported value.  State mandated and other fixed value exemptions are calculated by multiplying the percentage of the unit's value times the full exemption amount (the actual calculation divides the apported value by the full 100% value, then multiplies this amount times the flat exemption amount).  This is important for those offices servicing jurisdictions that are not 100% in the county.  Apported values and percentages can be seen on the Account Master Jurisdiction screen.

If an account had any partially paid rendition penalty prior to running batch menu no. 10993, Convert Rendition Penalty to Individual Units, and a change needs to be made on Account Master that affects levy, a popup message will appear asking that you contact ACT for assistance.

Note: ACT is implementing code changes to link levy changes to the exemptions listed in the Tax Unit Maintenance Exemptions screen. Make sure the correct exemptions for each unit are listed in this screen.

  1. From the Main Menu, click the Account Status (image37.gif) button or select Inquiry, then Account Status, or click the Go To drop-down list and select Account Status.  The Account Status screen will appear.

  2. If the account has carried over from a previous screen, the screen will fill with data..  

    If the Account Number field is blank, enter the account number, press F8, then go to next section.

    If you need to enter a different account number, press F7, key in the new account number, press F8, then go to next section.

Note: If you don't know your account number, see Locating an Account.

  1. On the Account Status screen, check the current exemptions and levy.

  2. From the Go To list, select Account Master.  The Account Master Summary screen will appear.

  3. If you need to view the summary of an account for a prior year, use the scroll bar on the right side of the screen. A popup will appear just before you get to the last year available if additional years have been archived (moved to a different part of the database to allow faster querying in the main database).

  4. If you want to view a year that is not available on the screen, follow the steps below:

a.  Click Prior Year(s).  The following window will appear.


b.  Using the drop-down list, select the year to view.  The list contains only those years that have been archived. If you want to see another year, key in that year in the year field.

c.  Click OK. The Account Master Summary screen will display.

WARNING: If you want to view data for a paid account in a prior year and your tax office has had its paid account data loaded into ACT's archive tables, the property values and jurisdictions for the rebuilt year will be inserted. Please check them for accuracy. Enter any exemptions into either the Account Master Summary or Special Exemptions tabs.  Remember to return to the Account Master Summary screen and press F10 (Save).

For unpaid prior year accounts and paid accounts that haven't been put into the archive tables, zeroes will show in the value fields for the year you rebuild if the client preference POPULATE_EQUAL_VALUES is set to N.  If the preference is set to Y, the property values will be populated with data from the Receivable and Property Value screens.   If no values exist for that year in those screens, $0.00 values will be inserted. Please check the values for accuracy.  Remember to enter any exemptions, then press F10 (Save).  

A Receivable is not created unless it existed in the archive tables or in the regular production tables before doing this Prior Year rebuild.

  1. To add a Homestead, Over 65, Disabled, VTX and/or Exempt this owner exemption, enter either a "Y' or an "X" in the appropriate box:

  2. Use "Y" to accept the standard exemption amounts or percentages built into the ACT system.  These amounts/percentages can be seen on the Tax Unit Maintenance screen.

  3. Use "X" to overwrite ACT's standard exemption amounts.  For further instructions on changing these amounts/percentages, see Adding, Changing or Removing Special Exemptions.

  4. For a Surviving Spouse Over65 exemption, enter F in the Over65 field; for a Surviving Spouse Over55 exemption enter S.

  5. You can have both an Over65 and a Disabled exemption, although the Appraisal District should send in a correction stating which exemption is correct. The ACT 7 system calculates exemptions amounts for both exemptions.

  6. Homestead exemptions are not required for Over65 or Disabled exemptions.

  7. VTX exemptions are for 100% disabled veterans and apply to homesite values only. If an account has both VTX and VET exemptions and both homesite and non-homesite values, the VET will be applied to the non-homesite values.

  1. To add or change a veteran exemption, click the Veteran drop-down list and select the amount of the exemption. Veteran exemptions are applied to homesite values first, then to ag and/or non-qualifying values. The amounts and percentages are as follows:

  1. To remove an exemption, blank out the Y, X., S, or F  For a veteran exemption, change the number to None.

  2. Click Save and Calculate Levy.

Warning! If the Homestead, Over 65 or Disabled fields have an X instead of a Y, you must check the Exemption Amount and the Code Type in the Special Exemptions tab.  The Code Type must be U if the X is also present. You will receive a warning message about this.

  1. Click OK to the confirmation message.

Notes:  The system will recalculate the levy based on the standard exemption changes.  

Repeat steps 5 - 10 for each year that is affected by the addition, change, or removal of a standard exemption.

The system will not allow the exemption value to be more than the taxable value before the exemption was added.

If discounts have been applied to an account that receives an adjustment, the discount amount is adjusted accordingly.  The discount is calculated from the base levy.

  1. Return to the Account Status screen to verify that the levy has changed as expected and that the correct exemptions are displayed in the HOVDFAER fields.

Notes:  If an exemption change results in an increased levy on a paid account, the delinquency date will change automatically.

If a refund is generated for some jurisdictions as a result of adding an exemption and levy is still due on other jurisdictions, the refund amount will be used to pay off those levies.


Notes about calculations:

The mandatory homestead exemption for a school district is $15,000.  The mandatory O65 or DRH exemption for a school district is an additional $10,000.

All tax units may offer a local option homestead percentage, which is calculated against the appraised homestead value of the property. The local option homestead exemption value is $5,000 or 20% of the appraised homestead value, whichever is greater. For units having less than 100%, the $5,000 is also 'apported', which means that the owner percentage of the unit (for ex, 50%) is multiplied times $5,000 to get the value (for ex., $2,500) to compare to the value that is 20% of the apported appraised homestead value. For Software Group files, the value given is already the apported appraised homestead value, not the 100% value.

All units may also offer a local option O65 or DRH exemption. The value for this is $3,000 or 20% of the appraised homestead value, whichever is greater.

If there is a local homestead option on a school district, the homestead exemption is the sum of the local homestead option calculated amount and the mandated amount.

A mandatory homestead exemption for certain other units (e.g., Road & Bridge, Farm to Market, Flood Control)) is $3,000.  For these units, if an O65 or DRH local option exemption is added to a homestead, then the local option applies, but the mandated state homestead value does not.

Remaining units do not have to have mandatory exemption amounts. They normally do not have both mandated and local option exemptions.

The following order is used when calculating multiple exemptions on the same account: XMP, CAP,  PRG, HOM, O65 (all varieties), DRH, VTX, VET, all others (including OSP and TIM), PRO.  For the Harris County Tax Office only, capped exclusion amounts are applied to accounts after the homestead, over 65 and disabled exemptions have been deducted from the appraised value. Capped exclusions for Harris County can also be applied to non-qualifying amounts. For other tax offices, capped exemptions can be applied only to homesite values.  For Fort Bend County, exemptions are calculated in the order in which they are listed in a database table.

Veteran exemptions must be applied to homesite values first, then to agricultural and non-qualifying values. VTX exemptions are for 100% of the homesite value for disabled persons. If an account has both VET and VTX (100% disabled) exemptions and both homesite and non-homesite value, the VTX should go against the homesite portion and the VET against the non-homesite values.

LDS exemptions occur on split accounts. The LDS portion is the local option only for disabled persons. These accounts will not have an HOM exemption because that exemption is on the other 'split' account.  True Automation loads have a flag to indicate a frozen account (which need a qualifying exemption) and at this time True Automation is the only appraisal district to include LDS exemptions.