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Denver Finance Department says some mailed property tax checks are lost, unaccounted for

Woman says her mailed property tax check hasn’t been cashed for over two months
Denver Finance Department says some mailed property tax checks lost or unaccounted for
Posted at 11:08 PM, Apr 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-16 09:59:07-04

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DENVER — Some of the property tax checks mailed to Denver's Finance Department are currently lost or unaccounted for.

The Denver Department of Finance confirmed the information after Anne Collins, a Denver resident, reached out to Denver7 and said property tax check mailed during the first week of February still hasn't been cashed.

She said she called the Denver Department of Finance several times before she was finally told that some of the property tax checks sent by mail were missing.

"What annoyed me is that my check is hanging out there for eight weeks and no one says there may be an issue," Collins said. "I know mistakes happen. I know things like this happen, but just let us know."

In statement to Denver7 the department said,

The Treasury Division within the Department of Finance has received several complaints of uncashed checks that had been mailed the first week of February 2021. While it is typical for some checks to be misplaced in the mail system each year, the bulk of missing checks within this specific time frame led the Department of Finance to believe there was an error within Postal Service or bank lock box processes. The City has contacted both the Postal Service and the bank but checks have not yet been recovered.

The department said there's no way for them to know which property owners are impacted but they believe the number is "low" and they're working with taxpayers on a case-by-case basis.

"I'm concerned for anybody that paid by check who was not alerted that this situation existed," Collins said. "I also called two city council offices and they weren't aware of the situation at all. They should at least be aware of what's going on. They should have been given a heads up. If they're not going to tell the citizens, at least tell the representatives."

The city is encouraging those impacted to place a stop payment on the original check and mail a new check of the same value to the below address.

City and County of Denver
Treasury Division
Attn: 2/02-2/05
201. Colfax Ave, Dept 1009 MC401
Denver, CO 80202-5330

The department is making sure residents are not charged interest.

The spokesperson added, "the city does provide property owners options to pay their taxes. If a property owner does not want to pay through a mailed check, they are able to pay first half, second half or full payments online, without needing to create an online account. There is a simple process to select the property parcel number (which residents could search by address here if they do not know the parcel) and select to pay by e-check, Visa, MasterCard or Discover payment types."

Collins said while she won't be mailing checks in the future, she hopes processes are streamlined and there's more transparency for those who pay by mail.

"I am a senior. I do use the internet but not all people use the internet. People prefer to pay by check. We're smart out here. You don't need to keep this from us because of your reputation — your reputation will be harmed more by not letting us know," she said.

Denver7 reached out to the United States Postal Service. A spokesperson said they were looking more into the matter.