John VanSanten wins “battle of the experts” tax assessment dispute case

July 25, 2016

John W. VanSanten, CRE, MAI, MRICS, Managing Director in the Real Estate Group, provided expert testimony regarding the valuation of Memorial Hospital of York (a short-stay acute care hospital in York, PA), in association with a property tax assessment dispute with the local taxing authorities.

Judge Stephen P. Linebaugh of the Court of Common Pleas of York County, Pennsylvania presided over the trial, which was ultimately a “battle of experts.” In his decision, Judge Linebaugh indicated that “As stated, the Court found Mr. VanSanten’s testimony and conclusions to be credible and (the opposing experts) not to be credible.”

The court’s decision reduced the assessed value of the hospital from $16,040,560 to $6,600,000 for the 2012 tax year and $5,700,000 and $4,800,000 for 2013 and 2014, respectively – all consistent with Mr. VanSanten’s opinion of market value. This resulted in tax refunds of several hundred thousand dollars for the client.