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Earlier this year, significant changes were made for taxation of business personal property in Michigan. The first is an exemption and the second involves a phase out of the tax.


The Small Business Exemption was passed by the legislature in early 2014, exempting small business from Michigan personal property tax. The taxpayer must have less than $80,000 of true cash value for all business property in a particular taxing jurisdiction and file an affidavit claiming such exemption with the assessor no later than February 10 of each tax year.


Additionally, the personal property tax phase-out was approved by voters in August 2014 and will apply to all personal property when used for industrial processing. Property classified as commercial property will still be taxable. The reduction in personal property taxes is comprised of two components:

  • Beginning in 2016, property that was acquired on or after January 1, 2013 will be exempt from property tax, and
  • Starting in 2016, all other property that is at least 10 years old will be exempt with the remaining property subject to tax being phased out until fully exempt in 2023.

A form prescribed by the Department of Treasury will have to be filed in 2015 indicating amount of property estimated to be exempt.


The personal property must also be classified as industrial on the assessment tax roll to be exempt.


Finally, a statewide Essential Services Assessment will be levied on exempt personal property against the fair market value of such property as exists at time of acquisition with a rate of 2.4 million on property 1-5 years old and at a lesser rate for older property.


For more information or questions on this topic, please contact your local UHY LLP professional.