Some of the most common appeal challenges include determining corporate strategies, deciding which properties to appeal, selecting professional and legal advisors, and finding ways to efficiently manage the entire process.
Last week, we were fortunate to attend and co-sponsor the International Property Tax Institute’s Appeals and Litigation Workshop. With representatives from some of the country’s largest REITs, retailers and corporate taxpayers in attendance, we were able to dig into these individual challenges on a deeper level. Understanding that no two organizations are the same, the attendees had the opportunity to share their own experiences including their struggles and solutions.
One of the most common themes that emerged from these discussions was focused on how to determine which properties to appeal and on what basis. The process for this varied greatly from organization to organization, some using in-house teams to decide, while others relying on valuation and legal experts to recommend a strategy. The “Leveraging Technologies” session, led by Rethink’s very own Mordechai Katzman, provided concrete methodologies for evaluating whether to appeal or not, including a discussion on the use of technology and how it can be leveraged to provide an update to disjointed or manual appeal determination processes.
Some of the more poignant elements of the discussion included:
- It is not always about what you appeal but, what you don’t appeal
- The benefit of centralizing data and analyzing entire datasets to facilitate strategic decision making
- How to apply a top-down approach, using macro trends to inform micro decisions
- The importance of leveraging available data, reporting metrics and tools
If you are interested in learning more about this topic, we will be expanding the discussion at Rethink’s Inaugural Tax Transformation Conference. The agenda for our upcoming conference will not only include a deep dive into the issues listed above, but will also include sessions from IPTI, as well as first-hand knowledge and experience sharing with some of the largest corporations in North America including Prologis, Target, Phillips Edison and more.