2008 Texas Attorney General Reports and Opinions 1 (2008)

handle is hein.sag/sagtx0089 and id is 1 raw text is: ATTORNEY GENERAL OF TEXAS
GREG ABBOTT
January 11, 2008
The Honorable Fred Hill                       Opinion No. GA-0589
Chair, Committee on Local Government
Ways and Means                             Re: Authority of property tax consultant to act as
Texas House of Representatives                agent for property owners under section 1.111,
Post Office Box 2910                          Tax Code (RQ-0596-GA)
Austin, Texas 78768-2910
Dear Representative Hill:
You write to inquire about the proper interpretation of section 1.111, Texas Tax Code.'
Section 1.111 governs a property owner's authority to designate an agent to act on the owner's behalf
in property tax matters. See TEX. TAX CODE ANN.  1.11 1(a)-(i) (Vernon 2001). Property tax
consultants, regulated under Occupations Code chapter 1152,2 often serve as agents of property
owners. Of the two questions you ask, your primary one involves the authority of these tax
consultants under section 1.111.
Section 1.111 sets out the scheme under which a property owner may designate an agent.
See TEX. TAX CODE ANN.  1.111 (Vernon 2001). It requires the Comptroller of Public Accounts
(the Comptroller) to promulgate designation forms. Id.  1.111(h). Section 1.111, among other
things, specifies the requisites of a designation of agent and requires certain warning language to be
included in the form for single-family residential designations. Id.  1.111(b), (h). Under the
directive to prescribe forms and adopt rules to facilitate compliance with section 1.111, the
Comptroller has adopted forms and rules pertaining to designation of agents.3 Id.  1.111(h); see 34
TEX. ADMIN CODE  9.3044 (2007) (Comptroller of Public Accounts, Appointment of Agents for
Property Taxes). You report that the Comptroller recently amended the relevant rule to prohibit
'See Letter from Honorable Fred Hill, Chair, Committee on Local Government Ways and Means, Texas House
of Representatives, to Honorable Greg Abbott, Attorney General of Texas, at 1 (June 21, 2007) (on file with the Opinion
Committee, also available at http://www.oag.state.tx.us) [hereinafter Request Letter].
2Chapter 1152, Occupations Code, regulates the tax consultant occupation. See TEX. Occ. CODE ANN. ch. 1152
(Vernon 2004). See id  1152.001(6)(E) (defining tax consulting services to include acting as an agent in accordance
with section 1.111).
'Form 50-162-1 is entitled Appointment of Agent for Property Taxes, available at http://www.window
.state.tx.us/taxinfo/taxforms/ (last visited on Jan. 7,2008). Form 50-241-1 is entitled Appointment of Agent for Single-
Family Residential Property Tax Matters, available at http://www.window.state.tx.us/taxinfo/taxforms/ (last visited on
Jan. 7, 2008).

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