Column | Mohave County Assessor’s Office adopts new program
The Mohave County Assessor’s office has recently implemented a new program designed to reduce the potential fraud associated with addresses. Our new program is called the Assessors Address Protection Program (AAPP).
This project started due to the many taxpayers that approached me asking for an additional layer of security for their property ownership.
We realized that most fraud begins with a change of address.The Assessor’s Office wanted to ensure that the property owners are the only ones who can change their address.
The unofficial change of an address could be fraudulent and might result in the property owners not receiving tax notifications, which could then result in a delinquency or ultimately a lien.The concern is that a property might be “stolen” by virtue of this fraud.
The solutions to this concern are limited. However, the Mohave County Assessor’s office has implemented a program where a taxpayer can file a notarized affidavit requesting that they are the only authorized agent that can change the mailing address on a property. Once the notarized affidavit is submitted, the address can only be changed with a second notarized affidavit with the new address.
The program does not totally “lock” the address. Certain statutory processes will necessarily override the lock. Deed transfers, death certificates, judgments and other processes of law would overrule the lock.
Our software system allows us to flag the parcel in such a way that someone processing an address change will see the enrollment in the AAPP program. Staff contacts the enrollee at a provided phone number to make them aware. Staff will also verify that if the person changing the address is the enrollee, they will then require an additional affidavit to change the address.
At the point that a new deed is received, staff can determine if it is the enrollee’s verified signature.The program is not designed to be a failsafe way to prevent fraud but should at the very least give an additional level of security in the maintenance of their address and ownership record.
To apply for the AAPP program, visit one of the Assessor’s offices listed below.There is a processing fee of $50 and a requirement to be notarized (we have notaries on staff.) We hope this program will add a layer of security for your property.
Bullhead City Office, 1130 Hancock Road, 928-758-070.
Kingman Office, 700 W. Beale St. , Kingman 928-753-0703.
– Lake Havasu City Office - 2001 College Drive, Suite 93, Lake Havasu City, 928-453-0702.