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Homestead and Safe Senior Refunds

Homestead and safe senior refunds for residents of Douglas County, Kansas.

The County Clerk's office is happy to assist with filing the Kansas Homestead Claim or the Property Tax Relief Claim ("Safe Senior") for people who do not file income tax returns. Our office is located on the first floor of the Douglas County Courthouse, 1100 Massachusetts Street, Lawrence.

Our hours for Homestead and Safe Senior assistance are Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.

Filing dates for 2016 returns are January 1, 2017 through April 17, 2017.

Please note that due to changes in the state law, the "Food Sales Tax Refund" that was available in prior years has been changed to a "Food Sales Tax Rebate". It is only available to people who file full income tax returns to the State of Kansas, which is not a function of this office.

The Kansas Homestead Claim program is for homeowners who were residents of Kansas for all of 2016. The refund is based on your total household income.

Do I qualify for this refund?
As a Kansas resident the entire year, you may be eligible for this refund if your total household income is $34,100 or less and:

  1. You were born before January 1, 1961, or;
  2. You were blind or totally and permanently disabled all of 2016, or;
  3. You had a dependent child who lived with you the entire year who was born before January 1, 2016, and was under the age of 18 all of 2016.

You cannot qualify if your homestead is NOT subject to property taxes. In addition, your home's appraised valuation for property tax purposes cannot exceed $350,000.

How much is the Homestead Refund?
The rebate is a percentage of the property tax paid. The maximum refund is $700.

A homeowner may claim either the Homestead refund or Property Tax Relief Claim ("Safe Senior"), but not both. The Kansas Department of Revenue's WebFile determines which claim is most beneficial to the homeowner.

What information is needed to file?
To better assist you with Homestead or "Safe Senior" filings please bring the following information with you when visiting our office:

  1. Your name, social security number, address, telephone number and date of birth.
  2. Personal information for all other household members, including name, social security number, and date of birth.
  3. Complete information regarding household income (for yourself and any others living with you in 2016) including these examples: taxable & nontaxable wages, salaries, self employment income, interest, dividends, earned income credit, social security, SSI benefits, disability payments, any retirement benefits, unemployment, alimony, welfare and temporary assistance payments, foster home care payments, gambling winnings, jury duty payments.
  4. If receiving disability, know the amount of disability payment received and the date that the disability began. First-time filers should bring their Social Security Benefit Verification Statement or Schedule DIS form.
  5. Know the amount of 2016 property tax billed, and whether there are any unpaid taxes.
  6. Bring your banking information if you would like to have your refund directly deposited into your bank account. (Bank routing number, bank account number and type of account.)

To save time, please complete this form and bring it with you: 2016 Homestead Refund Information Form (PDF format)

What is the Homestead Refund Advancement Program?
This program allows eligible homeowners to apply their anticipated Homestead refund to help pay the first half of their property taxes. The advancement is sent directly to the County Treasurer, eliminating the need for the filer to physically deliver a homestead eligibility letter to the County Treasurer.

There is a question on Form K-40H asking the homeowner whether they want their next year's homestead advancement sent directly to their County Treasurer. If the box was checked on the 2015 K-40H, the 2016 homestead advancement will be sent directly from the Kansas Department of Revenue to the County Treasurer. If you do not check this box, your homestead refund will not be automatically applied to your property tax bill.

PLEASE NOTE that if you checked the advancement box one year, it is absolutely necessary for you to file your homestead claim the following year in order to repay the money that was advanced toward your taxes.

The "SAFE Senior" Property Tax Relief Claim is a program for homeowners whose 2016 household income was $19,200 or less.

Do I qualify for this refund?

  1. You, the homeowner, must have been 65 years or older and a resident of Kansas for all of 2016, and;
  2. You must not have any delinquent property taxes in 2016.

In addition, your home's appraised valuation for property tax purposes cannot exceed $350,000.

How much is the "Safe Senior" Refund?
Qualifying homeowners are eligible for a refund of 75% of their property taxes paid.

A homeowner may claim either the Property Tax Relief Claim ("Safe Senior") refund or Homestead, but not both. The Kansas Department of Revenue's WebFile determines which claim is most beneficial to the filer.

For more information on the Homestead or "Safe Senior" refund programs through the Kansas Department of Revenue:

For a Kansas Department of Revenue agent, call 785-368-8222 (Please Note: 1st menu press 4, 2nd menu press 2). Be sure to call this number if you move as the Post Office will not forward refunds.

For more information about these programs, please contact: