MAR Legal Hotline

Legal Hotline Notes on Alternative Energy Sources and Property Taxes

As alternative energy sources such as solar panels and wind systems become more common, the question as to whether they are subject to Massachusetts property taxes has been asked. Are these systems exempt?


Legal Hotline Answer:   The Massachusetts Appellate Tax Board recently ruled that solar and wind-powered systems are exempt from property taxes, so long as the system generate hear or energy, and it services property that is subject to property taxes. This ruling stems from a case out of Westborough, Massachusetts where an 845-panel solar system on five acres was assessed for property taxes of nearly $40,000 over a two-year span. The abatements the owner sought were denied, and he appealed to the state’s appellate tax board, which ruled that these systems were in fact exempt, on December 4, 2014.