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If the assessors have, in form, sufficiently assessed a lot to a person as owner, personally, the court will assume for the protection of the officer that the circumstances necessary to give them jurisdiction to make the assessment, existed. Johnson v. Learn, 30 Barb. 616 (1859).
The lands of railroad companies are to be assessed the same as those of residents in the towns in which they lie, and not as nonresident lands. People ex rel. Dunkirk, etc., R. R. Co. v. Cassity, 46 N. Y. 46 (1871).
A railroad corporation is, for the purposes of taxation of its real estate, a resident of each town and county through which it passes, and is properly assessed in personam therefor. Buffalo & State Line R. R. Co. v. Supervisors of Erie, 48 N. Y. 93 (1871).
For purposes of taxation, railroad companies are residents of the towns through which the roads pass. People ex rel. Buffalo & State Line R. R. Co. v. Barker, 48 N. Y. 70 (1871); People ex rel. Buffalo & State Line R. R. Co. v. Fredericks, 48 Barb. 173 (1866). See, also, Mygatt v. Washburn, 15 N. Y. 319 (1857); Bissell v. Mich. South. & Northern Indiana R. R., 22 id. 285 (1860); Whitney v. Thomas, 23 id. 285 (1861); People ex rel. Hoyt v. Commrs. Taxes, 23 id. 231 (1861); S. C., 21 How. Pr. 385 (1861); Brit. Com. Ins. Co. v. Commrs. Taxes, 18 Abb. Pr. 130 (1864); People ex rel. Stephen v. Halsey, 53 Barb. 552 (1867); S. C., 36 How. Pr. 502 (1867); Dorn v. Fox, 6 Lans. 163 (1871); Barlow v. St. Nich. Nat. Bk., 63 N. Y. 401 (1875); Trowbridge v. Horan, 78 id. 439 (1879); Stewart v. Crysler, 100 id. 378 (1885); Harris v. Supervisors Niagara, 16 Abb. N. C. 282 (1884). In assessing occupied lands owned by persons not residents of the town or ward in which they were situated, it was held that, in the absence of statutory provision, they could be assessed against either owner or occupant. Van Rensselaer v. Cottrell, 7 Barb. 127 (1849); affirmed in Seld. Notes, 25.
The assessors are not authorized to name in their rolls the actual or supposed nonresident owners of lands. The lands are to be assessed, not the owners. New York & Harlem R. R. Co. v. Lyon, 16 Barb. 651 (1853).
Under Laws 1851, chap. 176, the assessors of a town could assess lands therein situated, occupied by a person other than the owner, though such owner was nonresident, to the owner or to the occupant, or as nonresident lands. Johnson v. Learn, 30 Barb. 616 (1855).
Such assessment was a justification to the collector though the assessors misjudged, provided there was nothing in the warrant to indicate that the land was not occupied by a person other than the owner. Id.
When real estate is assessed to the owner the name of the owner must be inserted in the roll; when it is assessed to the occupant, the name of the occupant should appear. Where real estate was assessed in the name of one not the owner, adding the words "or occupant," held, that the roll was fatally defective, and would not support process against property in the possession of the occupant. Du Bois v. Webster, 7 Hun, 371 (3d Dept., 1876).
The roll should show all the facts necessary to justify the action of the collector. Id.
The corporation owning an elevated railway may be assessed therefor as real estate, though the fee of the land upon which it stands is in another person or corporation which may be exempt from taxation. People ex rel. N. Y. Elevated R. R. Co. v. Commrs. of Taxes, 82 N. Y. 459 (1880); affg. 19 Hun, 460.
While the assessors of a town have no jurisdiction of the person of a nonresident so as to charge him personally with a tax on land owned but not occupied by him, where the agent of such owner had appeared before the assessors and procured a reduction, without protest against the assessment against the owner,- held, that this was such a waiver as would bar an action by the owner for damages for an illegal assessment. Hilton v. Fonda, 86 N. Y. 348 (1881).
Assessment to occupant need not indicate that the lands are nonresident. People ex rel. Hoffman v. Bug, 13 Abb. N. C. 169 (1883).
Where by contract between the parties one owns the land and another the buildings upon it, each interest may be assessed to its owner. Where the owner of the buildings is lessee of the land, the fact that the lessor has a right of re-entry does not affect the lessee's present interest, or his liability to assessment. People ex rel. Muller v. Assessors of Brooklyn, 93 N. Y. 308 (1883); affg. 15 N. Y. Week. Dig. 249.
Where lands of a nonresident of the county are occupied by a resident of the town where they are situated they must be assessed to the occupant. An assessment of them to the owner, or as nonresident lands is void. Stewart v. Crysler, 100 N. Y. 378 (1885); revg., in effect, 21 Hun, 285. Followed in Calkins v. Chamberlain, 28 W. Dig. 292 (1888); S. C., 15 N. Y. St. Repr. 576.
As to what are unoccupied lands, etc., see N. Y. & Harlem R. R. v. Lyon, 16 Barb. 651 (1853); People ex rel. Stephens v. Halsey, 36 How. Pr. 502 (1867); People ex rel. Dunkirk Ry. v. Cassity, 46 N. Y. 52 (1871); Stewart v. Crysler, 100 N. Y. 378 (1885).
Under 1 R. S. 989, §§ 1, 2, 3, the assessment of land to a person who is neither owner nor occupant is void. Whitney v. Thomas, 23 N. Y. 281 (1861).
Nonresident lands are unoccupied lands not owned by a person residing in the town or ward in which the same are situated. Hampton v. Hamsher, 46 Hun, 147 (1887).
§ 10. Taxation of real property divided by line of tax district. If a farm or lot is divided by a line between two or more tax districts, it shall be assessed to the owner in the district in which he resides. If the owner is not a resident of either district, it shall be assessed to the occupant in the district in which he
resides. If the land is unoccupied and the owner does not reside in either district, the portion of such farm or lot lying in each district shall be separately assessed therein. If there are several owners of such a farm or lot residing in different districts each containing a part thereof, a majority of them may elect in which district it shall be assessed by serving a written notice thereof on the assessors of each district during the month of May, but if such owners do not make such election, the property shall be assessed in the tax districts in which it is located. If the boundary line of a tax district passes through a building any portion of which is used as a dwelling, the owner of such building, if occupying the same or residing in either tax district, and otherwise, the person occupying such building as a dwelling house, may elect in which district such building and the adjacent land, owned, occupied and connected therewith, shall be assessed, by serving a written notice of such election on the assessors of each tax district during the month of May; but if such election is not made, the property shall be assessed in the tax districts in which it is located.
[Revisers' Note.-R. S., pt. I, chap. 13, tilt. II, § 4; R. S., 8th ed., 1094,
L. 1883, chap. 342; R. S., 8th ed., 1095.
The original law provides that where a tax district line divides an occupied farm or lot, it shall be taxed in the district where the occupant resides. This section changes the rule and taxes the land to the owner if he resides in either district. I. 1883, chap. 342, provides that where a dwelling-house is divided by a tax district line, the occupant may elect in which district the land shall be taxed. This section allows the owner to elect, if he resides in either district.]
The senate committee added the last clause to each paragraph.
"§ 4. When the line between two towns, wards or counties divides a farm, or lot, the same shall be taxed, if occupied, in the town, ward or county where the occupant resides; if unoccupied, each part shall be assessed in the town, ward, village or county where the same shall lie."
This section is quoted as it stood at the time the Tax Law took effect and as re-enacted by Laws 1886, chap. 315. See Laws 1871, chap. 287, for amendment of the original section. Laws 1871, chap. 287, was repealed by Laws 1872, chap. 355. Ward v. Aylesworth, 9 Wend. 282 (1832); Stewart v. Fonda, 19 Hun, 195 (1879).
The repeal of Laws 1871, chap. 287, did not restore section 4 of the Revised Statutes, which was me ged in the provisions of Laws 1871, chap. 287, and was abrogated by its repeal. McMillan v. Bellows, 37 Hun, 214 (1885). The provisions of 1 R. S. 389, § 4, to the effect that when the line
between two towns or wards divides a farm or lot the same shall be taxed if occupied in the town or ward where the occupant resides were repealed by Laws 1872, chap. 355, since that statute repealed Laws 1871, chap. 287, which made an amended substitute for the provisions of the Revised Statutes. Harris v. Supervisors of Niagara, 33 Hun, 279 (1884).
This section (§ 4) was amended by chap. 287 of the Laws of 1871, and that chapter was repealed by chap. 355 of the Laws of 1872, the effect of which was to repeal the entire provision. This section was re-enacted, however, by Laws 1886, chap. 315. Hampton v. Hamsher, 46 Hun, 144 (1887).
Where plaintiff's land lay in two towns, the dwelling-house being on the town line, and he voted and held office in one, a finding that his land was not assessable in the other could not be disturbed. Gordon v. Becker, 71 Hun, 282; S. C., 54 N. Y. St. Repr. 731; 24 N. Y. Supp. 1018 (1893).
The provisions of Laws 1886, chap. 316, for the taxation of lands lying in two towns, wards or counties, are not inconsistent with the provisions of Laws 1885, chap. 411, requiring lands in counties containing upward of 300,000 inhabitants to be assessed as nonresident lands, and the act of 1886 controls the method of assessment in counties affected by the act of 1885. People v. Wilson, 125 N. Y. 367; S. C., 35 N. Y. St. Repr. 286 (1891).
§ 11. Place of taxation of property of corporations.-The real estate of all incorporated companies liable to taxation, shall be assessed in the tax district in which the same shall lie, in the same manner as the real estate of individuals. All the personal estate of every incorporated company liable to taxation on its capital shall be assessed in the tax district where the principal office or place for transacting the financial concerns. of the company shall be, or if such company have no principal office, or place for transacting its financial concerns, then in the tax district where the operations of such company shall be carried on. In the case of toll bridges, the company owning such bridge shall be assessed in the tax district in which the tolls are collected; and where the tolls of any bridge, turnpike, or canal company are collected in several tax districts, the company shall be assessed in the tax district in which the treasurer or other officer authorized to pay the last preceding dividend resides.
[Revisers' Note.-R. S., pt. 1, chap. 13, tit. II, § 6; 8th ed., 1094, without change.]
Section 3 of the Tax Law provides that all real property within the State and all personal property situated or owned within the State, is taxable unless exempt. The provision of the Revised Statutes, part 1, chap. 13, title 4, section 1, that "all moneyed or stock corporations deriving an income or profit from the capital or otherwise" shall be liable to taxation on their capital, appears to be omitted from the revision, but such corporations are required to report by section 27 and are assessed pursuant to section 31 of the Tax Law. All such corporations, however, which pay a general State franchise or license tax other than for organization, are exempt from the payment of State taxes locally assessed. (See § 202 of this chapter.)
Se notes to §§ 12, 27 and 31 of this chapter.
See Mohawk R. R. v. Clute, 4 Paige, 394 (1834); Utica Cotton v. Oneida, 1 Barb. Ch. 432 (1846); Albany & Schenectady R. R. v. Osborn, 12 Barb. 225 (1851); Stevens v. Buffalo & New York City R. R., 31 id. 618 (1858); Bement v. Plattsburgh R. R. Co., 47 id. 109 (1866); People ex rel. Buffalo R. R. v. Fredericks, 48 id. 176 (1866); People ex rel. Utica R. R. v. Shields, 6 Hun, 556 (1876).
A banking corporation is subject to taxation as an inhabitant of the town or village where it is located. Ontario Bank v. Bunnell, 10 Wend. 186 (1833).
The certificate designating the city, town or county in which the principal office of the company incorporated to navigate the lakes and rivers, under Laws of 1854, chap. 232, is to be situated, is conclusive as to its location for the purposes of taxation upon its capital. In this case it appeared that in point of fact the greatest amount of business of the company was transacted and its officers resided at another place than that designated, and it was intimated that such designation was made for evading taxation there. Western Trans. Co. v. Scheu, 19 N. Y. 408 (1859).
A manufacturing corporation organized under the general act (Laws 1848, chap. 40), should be assessed for taxation in the place designated in its certificate as that where the operations of the company are to be carried on, though the principal office for transacting its financial concerns is in another town. Oswego Starch Factory v. Dolloway, 21 N. Y. 449 (1860).
The provision of 1 R. S. 389, § 6, directing that toll-bridge corporations shall be assessed in the town or ward where the tolls are collected, applies to assessments on personal estate only. The real estate thereof is to be assessed where it is situated.
A tax for school purposes, of that part of a toll-bridge lying within a school district, assessed as real estate,- held valid. Hudson River Bridge Co. v. Patterson, 74 N. Y. 365 (1878); affirming 11 Hun, 527.
The general provision of 1 R. S. 389, § 5, authorizing the assessment of personal estate in the hands of an agent, against him, in the same manner as if he were owner, does not apply to corporations liable