LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Joseph Bellino recently sponsored legislation to clarify the way property tax exemptions for a widow or widower of a disabled veteran are treated by the state.
“We owe an enormous debt to our service men and women who risk their lives to keep us free, and this is especially true for those who returned home with a disability,” said Bellino, R-Monroe. “One benefit we provide to repay this debt is offering disabled veterans a property tax exemption. My bill was brought to me by a constituent and would clarify that a disabled veteran’s surviving spouse can keep this exemption until they remarry — even if they move to a different house.”
The Michigan Department of Treasury’s State Tax Commission (STC) and the Michigan Tax Tribunal (MTT) have long been at odds about how the disabled veterans property tax exemption should work. The STC has supported the exemption following the individual veteran or their surviving spouse, but the MTT, which has oversight of property tax appeals, has maintained the exemption stays with the approved property only.
Recently, the Michigan Court of Appeals made a ruling along the lines of MTT’s view.
Senate Bill 163 would clarify existing law to align with the view of the STC and allow the surviving spouse of a disabled veteran to keep the exemption, unless they remarry, even if they move to a different property within the state.
The bill has been referred to the Senate Finance, Insurance and Consumer Protection Committee for consideration.