Thousands of Tarrant County tax payers to get refunds

The Tarrant County Tax Office says it will have to refund about millions of dollars to thousands of people because of a computer problem. And until the problem is fixed, cities and schools won't get the tax money they use to operate.

Ever since news broke of the refunds, the tax office has fielded hundreds of calls from homeowners wondering if they'll be one of the thousands of people who will get a check in the mail.

Tarrant County Tax Assessor Ron Wright says the numbers aren't good. About 80,000 accounts were affected by a software upgrade back in April.

More than 5,000 refunds will go out to taxpayers, totaling more than $12 million at one of the worst times of the year.

"So there's not a lot of revenue coming in this time of year to pay those refunds,” said Wright. “And so I have to wait for money to come in pay the refunds, get those satisfied and then start tax payments to the taxing entities."

That means, for now, cities and school districts in Tarrant County will stop getting their allotment of money from taxes until the refunds are finished.

Wright says taxing entities typically have reserves that will have to suffice until this is resolved.

And for all those taxpayers wondering if they'll be getting a check in the mail?

"If there's been no change to your account, if there's been no change to your status, then no. You're not going to get a refund,” said Wright. “It's only people who have had changes like exemptions being granted or they got their valuation lowered last year."

The refund checks will be mailed out over the next two months. Wright says all of the refunds should be resolved by October.

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