Returning Veterans Exemption
The application period closed on April 10, 2020 for applications for Tax Year 2019.
What is a Returning Veterans Homeowner Exemption?
Veterans returning from active duty in armed conflict are eligible to receive a $5,000 reduction in the equalized assessed value of their property only for each taxable year in which they return.
What criteria makes someone eligible for the Returning Veterans Homeowner Exemption?
To qualify the veteran must be:
- an Illinois resident who has served as a member of the U.S. Armed Forces, Illinois National Guard or U.S. Reserve Forces,
- be returning from active duty in an armed conflict involving the armed forces of the U.S.,
- owned or had a legal or equitable interest in the property and used it as a principal place of residence on January 1 of the Tax Year, and
- be liable for the payment of property taxes.
What additional documentation do I need to submit with my Returning Veterans Homeowner Exemption Application?
NOTE: The application period closed on April 10, 2020 for applications for Tax Year 2019.
Veterans must complete the exemption application with the CCAO and:
- If a veteran is discharged from active duty service, he or she will need to provide the Department of Defense DD Form 214 certified by the County Recorder or Recorder of Deeds or the Illinois Department of Veterans? Affairs.
- If a veteran is still on active duty after returning home, they will need to provide military orders and a travel voucher showing the date of his or her return. The documents must state that they are returning from armed conflict involving the armed forces of the U.S. within the tax year that they are requesting the exemption.
Please Note: This exemption may be received in addition to any of the other exemptions.
Note that if you received this exemption last year, a renewal application was sent directly to your home in February, 2020. To apply, first, review the eligibility requirements and supporting documents required. Then:
- A complete application requires supporting documents (listed above) and your home's PIN. How do I find my PIN?
- Avoid these common application errors in your tax year 2019 exemption application.
- Check the status of your online exemption application.
- Read more Online Exemption Application FAQs
- PDF version of the the Returning Veteran Exemption Application
After you apply in the mail or online:
It can take 60-90 days for Cook County Assessor’s Office staff to review and process your application and documents. You will then receive a letter (or an email, if you apply online) about whether your exemption application has been approved or denied.
If your exemption application is approved, the exemption will be applied by the Treasurer to the second installment property tax bill you receive in the summer.
Is it too late to apply for exemptions?
If your home was eligible for a homestead exemption in a prior tax year (2016, 2017, or 2018) and you already paid the full tax amount billed for that year, the Assessor’s Office can help you obtain a refund through the Certificate of Error process.
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