In order to be classified as agricultural lands, a return must be filed on or before March 1 of each year. Before classifying such lands as agricultural lands, the Property Appraiser may require the tax payer to furnish the Property Appraiser information to establish that such lands were actually used for a bona fide agricultural purpose. Only lands that are primarily used for bona fide agricultural purposes shall be classified as agricultural. The applicant must fill out and submit the DR-482 Application and Return for Agricultural Classification of Lands along with the required documentation.
Per the statute, “bona fide agricultural purpose” means good faith commercial agricultural use of the land.
In determining whether the use of the land is bona fide, the Property Appraiser will consider the following factors:
- 1. The length of time the land has been used.
- 2. Whether the use has been continuous.
- 3. The purchase price paid.
- 4. Size as it relates to the specific agricultural use, but a minimum acreage may not be required for agricultural assessment.
- 5. Whether an indicated effort has been made to care sufficiently and adequately for the land in accordance with accepted commercial agricultural practices, including, without limitation, fertilizing, liming, tilling, mowing, reforesting, and other accepted agricultural practices.
- 6. Whether the land is under lease and, if so, the effective length, terms, and conditions of the lease.
- 7. Such other factors as may become applicable.
- the maintenance of a dwelling on part of the lands used for agricultural purposes shall not in itself preclude an agricultural classification.
- When property receiving an agricultural classification contains a residence under the same ownership, the portion of the property consisting of the residence and curtilage must be assessed separately, pursuant to Florida Statute 193.011, to qualify for the assessment limitation set forth in Florida Statute 193.155.
- The physical Agricultural use of the property must be in place as of January 1st of the year applied. The Financial Documentation that must be submitted must also reflect the January 1st use.
- Financial documents that link to your Agricultural Business use are needed when applying.
- Lands may not be classified as agricultural lands unless a return is filed on or before March 1 of each year.
- The owner of land that was classified agricultural in the previous year and whose ownership or use has not changed must reapply every year.
- The lessee of property may make application if the lease, or an affidavit executed by the owner, provides that the lessee is empowered to make application for the agricultural classification on behalf of the owner and a copy of the lease or affidavit accompanies the application.
- Failure to make timely application by March 1, constitutes a waiver for one (1) year. However, an applicant who is qualified to receive an agricultural classification, who fails to file an application by March 1, must file an application for the classification with the property appraiser on or before the 25th day after the mailing by the property appraiser of the Notice of Proposed Property Taxes (TRIM Notice) as required under s. 194.011(1).
Upon receipt of sufficient evidence, as determined by the property appraiser, that demonstrates that the applicant was unable to apply for the classification in a timely manner or that otherwise demonstrates extenuating circumstances that warrant the granting of the classification, the property appraiser may grant the classification.
If the applicant files an application for the classification and fails to provide sufficient evidence to the property appraiser as required, the applicant may file, pursuant to Florida Statute 194.011(3), a petition with the Value Adjustment Board requesting that the classification be granted.
- Any landowner whose land is denied agricultural classification by the property appraiser may appeal to the value adjustment board. See Appeals/VAB section.
- The property appraiser shall notify the landowner in writing of the denial of agricultural classification on or before July 1 of the year for which the application was filed.
On November 4, 2008, Florida voters approved Amendment 6 creating changes to Section 4 of Article VII of the State Constitution. This Amendment provides for classification and assessment of working waterfront property based on the following qualified uses:
- Predominantly used for commercial fishing
- Accessible to the public and used for vessel launches into navigable waters
- A marina or dry stack open to the public
- A water-dependent marine manufacturing facility
- A water-dependent commercial fishing facility
- A water-dependent marine vessel construction or repair facility and/or support facilities
Prior to the passage of this amendment, working waterfront properties were assessed based on the ‘Highest and Best Use’ resulting in properties being assessed at values higher than the actual businesses they housed.
To apply for this classification, please complete the Working Waterfront Assessment Application. In addition, documents supporting the property’s use as a working waterfront must accompany this application. Documents such as tax returns, business licenses, photographs, etc. will aid the Property Appraiser in determining the qualification of this use.