The Assessor is responsible for the valuation of all taxable property in the County. Every person owning or holding tangible personal property on the first day of January, including all such property purchased on that day, shall be liable for taxes thereon during the same calendar year. The political subdivisions, a.k.a. taxing jurisdictions (school districts, rural fire districts, the county library, etc.) are responsible for setting the tax rates necessary to generate the revenue needed to fund their operations. Property tax rates are set by September 1st of every year.
Missouri's property tax continues to be the largest and most reliable source of funding for the State's local governments, with approximately two-thirds of the taxes collected going to local schools. An efficient, professional assessment program ensures that this stable, steady revenue source is not only maintained but also that it is implemented in a fair and equitable fashion.
- 2023 Personal Property Assessment List (PDF)
- 2022 Personal Property Assessment List (PDF)
- 2021 Personal Property Assessment List (PDF)
- 2020 Personal Property Assessment List (PDF)
The assessment of military personnel continues to be an area of confusion, judging from the number of calls we receive on this subject. The law in this area is controlled by the Federal Soldiers and Sailors Relief Act of 1940. The United States Supreme Court has stated that military personnel shall not lose their residence or domicile in their home state solely because they are absent from the state in compliance with military or naval orders. However, military personnel stationed away from Missouri must still pay personal property taxes in Missouri assuming they retain Missouri as their home state of record.
The military personnel are treated as though they never left their home state and county. Consequently, assessors should treat the tangible personal property stationed in other states or countries the same as if the taxpayer is living in the county and the personal property is present in the state. The other side of the matter is that the personal property of any individuals residing in your county by means of military orders is not taxable in your jurisdiction, with the exception of business personal property located in Missouri and owned by non-resident military personnel.
The Attorney General issued an opinion [Burrell, Op. Att'y. Gen. No 95 (February 16, 1966)] concluding that non-resident military personnel stationed in Missouri may obtain a certificate of no tax due (a waiver) from the collector and license their cars in Missouri; however, if a military spouse is a sole owner, it should be taxed as any other resident. Verification of the home of record is easily ascertainable by looking at the bottom portion of the "Leave and Earnings Statement" (i.e., pay stub) which indicates the individual's claimed home state of record.
Where Military Personal Property is Taxed
|Type of Owner||Location of Property||Where Taxed|
|Non-MO Resident Military||In Missouri||Non-taxable|
|MO Resident Military||In Missouri||In county of residence|
|MO Resident Military||Outside Missouri (voluntary reporting)||In county of residence|
|MO Resident Military||Outside Missouri (non-reporting)||In county of residence|
- What is Personal Property?
According to MO State Statute 137.075 "Persons owning or holding tangible personal property on the 1st day of January shall be liable for taxes." Personal property includes all motor vehicles, motorcycles, recreational vehicles, trailers, boats, motors, mobile homes, aircraft, farm machinery, livestock, and grain.
The Assessor sends out assessment lists January 1 of each year. It is your responsibility to return that list to the Assessor's office by March 1, listing the taxable personal property you own as of January 1 of that year. Under state law, there is no provision for prorating taxes for a partial year, and you will be penalized if the form is not returned to the Assessor's office by March 1.
- Am I eligible for a tax waiver on my personal property?
To qualify for a tax waiver in Missouri, you must meet one of the following requirements:
- You are new to our state.
- You are a former resident returning to Missouri from another State and no unpaid personal property taxes are due in Clay or any other Missouri County.
- You lived in Clay County on January 1st of the previous year but you did not have any personal property titled in your name.
If you meet requirements number 1 or 2, you will need to bring your out-of-state title, application for title, or registration. If you do not have a vehicle that was registered in that state you must provide proof of residence in that state for January 1 of the previous year.
If you meet requirement number 3, you must bring the title or application for title in order to receive a tax waiver.
There is no fee for a tax waiver.
- Why do I need to have the Title or Application for Title to get a waiver?
We need to verify the purchase date, and that the vehicle you are tagging is going to be licensed in your name before we issue the waiver. We also need to see the make, model, and vehicle identification number (VIN) to assess your vehicle properly.
- How do I fill out my personal property assessment list?
There are two ways you can assess: Online or with a paper assessment. Both of these will be mailed to your address on record January 1 of each year. The online option will provide your account and pin number along with instructions on how to file online and the link to do so. The paper assessment form will have your address and property from the previous year pre-printed on the form. If there are changes to your address, please make those changes in the spaces provided. Even if you have moved out of Clay County, and your mail was forwarded please mail the list back to the Assessor's office informing us of this so that you may be removed from the tax rolls and avoid future mailings.
The property that is pre-printed on the list is the property that was on file for you the preceding year. For any property that has been disposed of you will need to draw a line through and provide the date disposed of. Below the list of pre-printed items are sections for you to list property that was acquired during the previous year. Be sure to fill the form out completely. Do not re-list a property that has been pre-printed for you. Should corrections need to be made to the pre-printed property lines item, make those corrections directly to them.
Both types of assessment must be accurately completed and returned to the Clay County Assessor's office before March 1 in order to avoid a late filing penalty.
Generally, leased vehicles are claimed by the leasing company and you are not directly responsible for the taxes. However, there are exceptions so you may want to check with your leasing company before listing a leased vehicle.
If you have further questions, please contact the Assessor's Office at 816-407-3520 or 816-407-3470.
- I need to license a car not included on my paid tax receipt. What do I do?
If you bought your car after January 1 of this year, use last year's receipt. Property taxes are not owed on the new vehicle unless you owned it on January 1st. If you did own the vehicle on January 1 of last year and it is not listed on your receipt or is incorrect on your receipt or statement, please contact the Assessor's office.
- What is Business Personal Property?
Business Personal Property consists of every kind of property used by the business that is not real property. It must be movable without damage to itself or the real estate.
- Who must render Business Personal Property?
Any Business operating in Clay County as of January 1st of any year. This includes retail stores, distribution and manufacturer, professionals such as doctors, lawyers, and dentists. This would also include any home-based businesses.
- How do I register my business with the county?
You can use our online registration form or visit the County Assessor Page and print a Business Personal Property Registration Form, fill it out, and send it in or come into one of our two locations and do it in person.
- Can I get a breakdown of the assessed value on my account?
- May I have an extension for filing my Business Personal Property declaration?
Declarations are due March 1. Requests for an extension must be received by March 1 via email, and extensions can only be granted by April 1.
- Can I fax my Business Personal Property declaration in?
Yes, please use the fax number 816-407-3501.
- What type of equipment should be claimed on my Business Personal Property declaration?
Anything that is used for the business that is not considered inventory (for sale).
Examples: office fixtures, office equipment, displays, office furniture, signs, fax copy, machines, phones, file cabinets, office décor, computer equipment (including software), data processing equipment, tools, machinery, high-tech equipment (computer-driven), slot machines, robotics, construction equipment, etc.
- What is MACRS?
The Modified Accelerated Cost Recovery System (MACRS) is the current tax depreciation system in the United States. Under this system, the capitalized cost (basis) of tangible property is recovered over a specified life by annual deductions for depreciation.
- How do I appeal my values?
These are generally conducted between April 1 and May 1 by the Assessor's staff. Call 816-407-3500 between 8:30 am and 4:30 pm. Monday through Friday for an appointment.
Board of Equalization
Following informal hearings, taxpayers may appeal to three BOE members. Forms for making an application to appeal to the BOE are available at the county Clerk's office at 816-407-3570. Forms must be returned to the Clerk's Office no later than the second Monday in July.
State Tax Commission
Appeals must be received by the state tax commission by September 30th or within 30 days of the BOE decision. Taxpayers must first present an appeal to the BOE before continuing to the state tax commission.
- I bought my vehicle in December but did not take possession of it until after January 1st; do I still have to pay taxes on it?
Yes. The date of purchase listed on the application for title is the date you actually owned it regardless of when you picked it up.
- I am renewing 2- year license plates; which years’ personal property tax receipts do I need?
You will need your two previous year's receipts. If you were assessed in another Missouri county, you may need to contact that county for a previous year's receipt. If you cannot locate your tax receipt for the appropriate year, please call the Collector's office at 816-407-3200 for additional information.
- Why am I being taxed for a vehicle I no longer own?
The amount of tax you owe is based on the vehicles owned on January 1 of that year. Regardless of whether you no longer own those vehicles or whether you have purchased new vehicles, your tax is based on the vehicles owned on January 1.
- I'm new to Missouri, how long do I have to obtain Missouri license plates and a Missouri’s driver’s license?
You have 30 days to obtain Missouri license plates and a Missouri’s driver license.
- Do I owe Personal Property taxes although I am no longer a Missouri resident?
Yes. According to state law, your tax obligation is established on January 1. Even if you move out of state the next day, you are still obligated to pay Missouri taxes. State law makes no provisions for prorating your tax bill.
- I was not a Clay County resident on January 1st but I live here now. Why can’t my personal property be assessed here?
Missouri law states that you must claim your personal property in the county you resided in on January 1st. We would be happy to put you on our mailing list for the next year. Please contact our office at 816-407-3520 or fill out the Address Change Form.
- The property is titled in my name but my relative drives it, do I still have to claim it?
Yes. The license bureau requires that anything titled in your name have a matching receipt (in your name) showing that taxes were paid on that vehicle.
- My vehicle is not running, do I still have to claim it on my Assessment form?
Yes. Any vehicle titled in your name must be claimed regardless of condition.
- Who pays the Personal Property tax bill if I get a divorce?
The tax responsibility goes to the owner of the record on January 1. If the property is owned jointly and the court order dissolving the marriage does not address tax liability, both parties are jointly responsible for taxes. Neither party can obtain a statement of no taxes due until the tax liability is satisfied. If you are separated and not legally divorced we can not split the bill once it is made. We can separate the account for the next year. If you are legally divorced you will need to provide copies of the final divorce decree showing who is responsible for each vehicle and you must have a current address for each party.
- Why is my Personal Property tax bill so high?
The amount of tax you owe each year is based on the value of the vehicles you owned on January 1 of that year. The value of each vehicle is found by using a standard rate book. The assessed value of each vehicle can be found on your tax statement. State Statutes dictate that we use the October issue of the NADA book.
- Why is there an Assessment penalty on my bill?
You are required to return your Assessment form to our office no later than March 1st of each year. If it is received later than March 1st you will be assessed a late filing penalty that is based on the total assessed value of your vehicles. The increments are as follows and are set by the State:
Total Assessed Value Penalty $0 to $1,000 $15 $1,001 to $2,000 $25 $2,001 to $3,000 $35 $3,001 to $4,000 $45 $4,001 to $5,000 $55 $5,001 to $6,000 $65 $6,001 to $7,000 $75 $7,001 to $8,000 $85 $8,001 to $9,000 $95 $9,001 and above $105
- Why is my Personal Property tax bill higher than my friend’s tax bill?
The amount of tax you owe is based on the value of your vehicles, not on the number of vehicles. It is common for a person with one expensive vehicle to owe more taxes than someone with several less expensive vehicles. Also, tax bills vary by taxing district because of levy differences.
- How is the assessed value figured for my personal property?
MO State Statute 137.080
By law, personal property is divided into subclasses.
Subclass Assessed Value Grain ½ of 1% of the true market value Livestock 12% of true market value Motor Vehicles 33 ⅓% of true market value Manufactured Homes 19% of true market value Historic Aircraft and Vehicles 5% of true market value All other personal property 33 ⅓% of true market value
Classification and assessment ratios are set by the State Law and cannot be changed by the Assessor.
- Who makes the decision to reassess real estate property?
Missouri Revised Statute 137.115 requires that the Assessor reassess all real property every two years on January 1st, in the odd-numbered year. This value is carried forward to the even-numbered year except for new construction and property improvements.
- Why does Clay County reassess real estate property?
The Assessor's Office is tasked to ensure that the tax burden is distributed equitably among all property owners. To accomplish this, Missouri Revised Statutes - Chapter 137, is followed when assessing all real property.
Re-assessment is the process that helps to validate that real property is valued at current market value. All real property in Clay County is valued with uniform and consistent procedures following Missouri Revised Statutes - Chapter 137. Over time the value of property changes due to market conditions, location, condition of the property, and other physical and economic factors. Some property values change more rapidly than others. Reassessment identifies changes in market value, along with property condition to determine current market value.
- How can I be sure that I'm only paying my fair share of Real Estate taxes?
The Assessor's Office continually collects and researches sales and lease data, income and expense data, along with other market factors when appraising the current market value of the real property. An important point to remember is that the Assessor Office does not create market value; it analyzes the transactions of buyers and sellers to help determine property values during the reassessment process. It is buyers and sellers that determine the levels of property value with arm's length sales transactions in the marketplace. Collected sales data is used to determine your property's current market value.
Once appraised values have been calculated based on information gathered by appraisers, the values are analyzed to determine how accurate and equitable they are. The Assessor's Office staff compares assessments to sales prices to determine ratios, which are then used to measure the level and uniformity of assessments. Sales ratio studies by neighborhood, type of property, and other criteria are performed regularly to assure uniformity of values.
- What is market value?
Market value, true market value in money, and appraised value have the same meaning under Missouri law. A simple definition of market value is the price the property would bring when offered for sale by a person who is willing but not obligated to sell and it is bought by a person who is willing to purchase it but who is not forced to do so.
- How do foreclosure properties affect my market value?
Foreclosure sales of real property are typically not considered a true arm’s length transaction, mainly for two reasons: 1) Seller motivation (do I have to sell to stop a foreclosure action or a bank-owned property) when selling a foreclosure property is much different than a typical sale. 2) The physical condition of a foreclosure property is usually poor. Normally a foreclosure property will require extensive repairs to become salable. Foreclosure properties affect market value by forcing competing properties to adjust asking prices. Current sale data shows that real property not under duress to sell may have a longer marketing period but sells for a much higher value than a distressed foreclosure sale.
- What is Real Estate market value versus assessed value?
Market value is the appraised value of your property as of January 1st. The assessed value is calculated by multiplying the property market value, based on classification, by the correct assessment ratio. Classifications: Agricultural - 12%, Residential - 19%, Commercial - 32%.
- How does the assessed value affect my real estate taxes?
The assessed value of your property is used to determine your portion of real estate taxes paid to support local school and government services. It is important to you and to our office that your assessed valuation is accurate.
The amount of real estate taxes paid in Clay County is determined by local taxing authorities such as school, fire, library, hospital, and road districts, along with city and county taxing authorities. This is why it is important to be aware of any proposed changes in spending by your local schools or governments.
- How can I determine the county's market value for my real estate property?
The Change of Value Notice displays the previous market value and current market value by the calendar year.
- How are mobile homes assessed?
Mobile homes are assessed from the previous year's October issue of the NADA book, and assessed at 19% per the State of Missouri.
Mobile homes are assessed similarly to vehicles in the fact that it is based on who owned the mobile home on January 1st, where the mobile home was located, the year, and the make of the mobile home.
Mobile homes differ from vehicles in the fact that they are claimed where they are located and not where the owner is located. Also, the total square footage is taken into consideration when figuring the assessed value.
Per Section 137.092, RsMo the mobile home parks are responsible for rendering the mobile homes and owners located within the park to the Assessor's office every year. So, even if you don't claim it on your personal list, it may still be added based on the report that we receive from your park.
- Aren't mobile homes real estate?
Mobile homes are only considered real estate if they are permanently affixed to a permanent foundation. If that is the case, you will need to make sure to contact Clay County.
- I received a bill, but only my mobile home was on it. Why?
More than likely, we did not receive your personal assessment list, but the mobile home was rendered to us by the park. When that happens, we do not assess the vehicles until the taxpayer either sends in their personal assessment list or comes in to one of our locations to be assessed.
- I no longer live in Clay County. Why am I still being assessed on the mobile home?
Until we are informed by the park or the taxpayer, whoever's name is on the title or the purchasing agreement for the mobile home will be the person responsible for the taxes.
- I'm renting a mobile home, am I responsible for the taxes?
It should state in your rental agreement who is responsible for the taxes. If it is a 'rent to own' agreement, you may be responsible. Make sure to check your agreement or contact whomever you are renting from.
- How are aircraft assessed?
Aircraft are assessed based on year, make, model number, and hours flown the previous year. We use the spring issue of the Aircraft Bluebook per the State of Missouri.
- When will my aircraft be considered historic?
Aircraft is considered historic when it is 25 years or older and flown under 200 hours in a year.
- My aircraft was a kit plane. How is that assessed?
Kit planes are always assessed at the historic aircraft percentage based on the purchase price of the kit, purchase amount for additional parts, and number of labor hours.
- My aircraft is in parts, do I still need to claim it?
Yes, the aircraft will still need to be assessed even if it is in parts. It will be assessed at the historic percentage based on the total purchase amount.
- How do I get my aircraft assessed by the State Tax Commission?
Aircraft is eligible to be assessed by the State of Missouri if it is used for commercial purposes and has a gross take-off weight of over 3,000 pounds.
If your aircraft meets those standards, you can learn more on the STC Website.
If you choose to have your aircraft assessed by the state, you will need to make sure to inform Clay County.
- What is needed to obtain Missouri plates?
You will need the title or registration to the vehicle, proof of insurance, a Missouri State Inspection Certificate, and a tax waiver from the Clay County Assessor’s office.
- Moving to Clay County From Another County in Missouri: What is required to license my vehicle in Clay County?
You will need the title or registration to the vehicle, proof of insurance, a Missouri State Inspection Certificate, and a copy of the tax receipt showing paid taxes from the county where you were a resident on January 1 of the previous year. If you have two-year tags on your vehicle, the license office will require the previous two years tax receipts.
- How do I get on Clay County’s tax rolls?
If you are a new resident of Clay County as of January 1, you need to contact the Clay County Assessor's office so that an assessment list may be mailed to you prior to March 1. If you become a Clay County resident after January 1, you will need to notify the county assessor's office that you moved from with your new address so they know where to send the bill for that year and contact the Clay County Assessor's office to be mailed a list for the following year. Taxpayers already on the tax rolls may fill out their assessment forms online (January 2 through April 30), whereas all taxpayers can download a current assessment list, print and fill it out at home, and send it to our office. Remember, you pay taxes to whichever county you lived in on January 1.
- Moving within Clay County
If you move from one address in Clay County to another address in Clay County, please fill out the Address Change Form or contact the Assessor’s office with your new address.
- Moving out of Clay County
If you move out of Clay County, please fill out the Address Change Form or contact the Assessor’s office with your new address. If moving to another county in Missouri you will need to notify that county’s assessor’s office of your residence there.
- Why do my taxes increase?
Tax levies and taxes increase due to increased costs of school and government services. The Assessor is tasked to value property at its current market value as of January 1st. As the cost of schools and government increases, so do your taxes. An increase in your tax bill can be the result of an increase in your tax levy, an increase in your property assessment, a combination of tax levy and reassessment, or new construction on your property.
- What are tax levies?
A tax levy is a number determined by a taxing authority such as a school district used in calculating, from the assessed value, the amount owed to that taxing authority for that tax year. As government services and costs increase, levies and taxes have to be raised to pay for these services.
- Who are the taxing authorities in Clay County?
School Districts, Fire Districts, Ambulance Districts, Road Districts, Water Districts, Hospital Districts, Library Districts, Junior College along with City and County Districts. Your property location determines which districts receive your tax dollars.