Returning Veterans Exemption


This exemption lowers the equalized assessed value of the veterans principal residence by $5,000 for two consecutive assessment (tax) years. This would include the tax year and the following year that the veteran returns from active duty in an armed conflict involving the armed forces of the United States.


To qualify, applicants must:
  • • be an Illinois resident who has served as a member of the U.S. Armed Forces, Illinois National Guard, or U.S. Reserve Forces,
  • • have returned from active duty in an armed conflict involving the armed forces of the U.S.,
  • • have owned or had a legal or equitable interest in the land on which a single-family residence is situated and used as your principal place of residence on January 1 of the assessment years, and
  • • be liable for the payment of the property taxes.

To Apply:

All applications must be submitted online through the Smartfile E-Filing Portal. You can receive assistance by phone or in person by calling or visiting the Chief County Assessment Office or the local township assessor's office. To start the application process:

  • Go to the Chief County Assessment Office Smartfile E-Filing Portal at
  • Log into your account, create a new account, or log in as a guest
  • Click "Available Filings" and choose "EX - Homestead Exemption Form" if you are a first-time applicant, and "EX - Homestead Renewal" if you are applying to renew your exemption
  • Click "Begin Filing"
  • Enter the tax year 2021 (for renewals only), and your property PIN and follow the instructions.
35 ILCS 200/15-167

Properties Held in Trust

When you are applying for a new exemption and the property is held in trust, we must verify that the applicant is a beneficiary of that trust. The exemptions cannot be applied without this verification. Please include a copy of that part of the actual trust agreement which states that the applicant is a beneficiary. This can usually be found on the first few pages of the trust document. Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact us directly at 847-377-2100.