A person can continue to take the Michigan principal residence exemption if they are not living at home while recovering from an illness or surgery. However, the person must be able to show their intent to return to the residence.
Residing in Another Location
In order for a person who resides in a location for purposes of convalescence to receive the exemption, they must show their intent to return to the property by meeting four conditions.
- The owner continues to own the property while residing in the other location.
- The owner has not established a new principal residence.
- The owner maintains the property while residing in the other location.
- The property is not leased and is not used for any business purpose.
Proving Eligibility for the Exemption
The burden of proof lies with the taxpayer to show eligibility under these circumstances. Assessors must deny the exemption if the owner fails to provide evidence that he or she is recovering from a serious illness or surgery. Furthermore, the assessor must deny the exemption if a non-owner occupant of the property is paying for utilities and maintenance of the property or any other consideration for the property.
Memorandum, Michigan State Tax Commission, June 5, 2018