Texas Register

TITLE 34 PUBLIC FINANCE
PART 1COMPTROLLER OF PUBLIC ACCOUNTS
CHAPTER 9PROPERTY TAX ADMINISTRATION
SUBCHAPTER KARBITRATION OF APPRAISAL REVIEW BOARD DETERMINATIONS
DIVISION 1GENERAL RULES
RULE §9.4205Agent Representation in Binding Arbitration
ISSUE 01/05/2024
ACTION Proposed
Preamble No Rule Available

(a)Professional qualifications. Property owners may represent themselves or choose to be represented by an agent. An agent must hold a current and active license, certification, or registration in one of the following fields:

  (1)an attorney licensed to practice in Texas;

  (2)a real estate broker or sales agent licensed under Occupations Code, Chapter 1101;

  (3)a real estate appraiser licensed under Occupations Code, Chapter 1103;

  (4)a property tax consultant registered under Occupations Code, Chapter 1152; or

  (5)a certified public accountant licensed under Occupations Code, Chapter 901.

(b)Required documentation.

  (1)The property owner must complete and sign the appointment of agent for binding arbitration form. No other agent appointment, authorization form, or document will be accepted.

  (2)Neither the individual being appointed as an agent under this subsection, nor an agent appointed under Tax Code, §1.111, may sign the form described in paragraph (1) of this subsection on behalf of the property owner.

  (3)For requests for binding arbitration filed with the comptroller on or after January 1, 2024, the agent shall retain the form and shall produce the form immediately upon request from the property owner, appraisal district, ARB, arbitrator assigned to the arbitration, or comptroller under Tax Code, §41A.08(d).

  (4)Failure of the agent to produce the form immediately upon request as required by Tax Code, §41A.08(d), or production of an invalid form, shall result in dismissal of the request for binding arbitration and may result in loss of the arbitration deposit.

(c)Agent responsibilities. Authorized agents may take the following actions in an arbitration on a property owner's behalf:

  (1)file online requests for binding arbitration and pay the required arbitration deposit through the online arbitration system;

  (2)receive a potential refund of an arbitration deposit, if the agent is designated as a refund recipient under §9.4204(d) of this title;

  (3)send and receive communications regarding the arbitration;

  (4)negotiate with the appraisal district to try to settle the case before the arbitration hearing;

  (5)execute a settlement agreement with the appraisal district to resolve the case;

  (6)withdraw a request for binding arbitration; and

  (7)appear and represent the property owner at the arbitration hearing.

(d)Designation of specific individual.

  (1)The property owner must identify on the appointment of agent for binding arbitration form a specific individual to act as an agent and provide the agent's license number for the specific type of license, certification, or registration that qualifies the individual to act as an agent under subsection (a) of this section.

  (2)The property owner may also appoint an alternate agent on the appointment of agent for binding arbitration form. Unless the alternate agent is with the same organization as the first agent, the alternate agent shall not be authorized to act on a property owner's behalf unless the alternate agent provides written notice to the appraisal district and the appointed arbitrator that the first agent is not available. For LBA, a copy of the notice must also be provided to the ARB.

  (3)A company or business entity does not qualify to act as an agent.

(e)Agent representation at arbitration hearing. Only the individual(s) identified on the appointment of agent for binding arbitration form may undertake representation of the property owner in the arbitration for which the request for binding arbitration was submitted. No other individual, including a licensed attorney, may act on the property owner's behalf in that proceeding unless another subsequently executed appointment of agent for binding arbitration form is completed and signed.

(f)Agents for non-individual property owners. The property owner's name, current mailing address, phone number, and email address, if available, must be provided on the appointment of agent for binding arbitration form. If the property owner is not an individual, an authorized individual shall complete and sign the form on behalf of the property owner. The authorized individual's name and contact information must be provided on the form, as well as the basis for the authorized individual's authority.

(g)Duration of agent appointment. The appointment of agent for binding arbitration form is valid for three years from the date of execution, unless revoked. The property owner may revoke the appointment of an agent or alternate agent at any time by delivery of written notice to the agent, and all alternate agents, if any are appointed, to the address provided on the form or the agent's last known address. A copy of the revocation notice must also be provided to the comptroller, appraisal district, and the arbitrator assigned to the case, if an arbitrator is assigned. For LBA, a copy of the revocation notice must also be provided to the ARB.

(h)Agent certifications. In undertaking representation of the property owner pursuant to Tax Code, §41A.08(b), each agent must certify that:

  (1)they are acting as a fiduciary on behalf of the property owner in the specific arbitration proceeding for which the request for binding arbitration was filed and agree to undertake the responsibilities specified in subsection (c) of this section; and

  (2)the property owner knowingly authorized the agent's filing of the request for binding arbitration and the agent's representation of the property owner in the arbitration.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on December 21, 2023

TRD-202304939

Victoria North

General Counsel, Fiscal and Agency Affairs Legal Services

Comptroller of Public Accounts

Earliest possible date of adoption: February 4, 2024

For further information, please call: (512) 475-2220



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