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Cook County owes $100 million-plus in property tax refunds

October 9, 2020 GMT

CHICAGO (AP) — More than $100 million in property tax refunds is owed to thousands of Cook County residents, county Treasurer Maria Pappas says, and most have no idea they are due the money.

“If people knew that they had this money, then they would come and get it,” Pappas said. “This is simply a matter of not knowing.”

Most of the money comers from $79 million in double payments, Pappas told WLS-TV.

For example, two people in a household may have both paid taxes on the property at the same time without knowing.

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Willie Larkin said he bought a home several years ago and paid taxes on the property, not knowing the seller had already paid them. He was unaware there was $500 in his name waiting for him to claim.

“It’s a lot of money,” Larkin said. “It’s a lot of money to me. I was shocked because I couldn’t believe there was a credit there from 13 years.”

Pappas said her office also has $38 million worth of homeowner exemptions.

“Years can go by, and they simply never applied for a homeowners exemption or a senior exemption,” she said.

For more information, visit cookcountytreasurer.com.