2134.  Suits to recover taxes paid under protest

A.(1)  No court of this state shall issue any process to restrain, or render any decision that has the effect of impeding, the collection of an ad valorem tax imposed by any political subdivision, under authority granted to it by the legislature or by the constitution.

(2)  A person resisting the payment of an amount of tax due or the enforcement of a provision of the tax law shall timely pay the amount due to the officer designated by law for the collection of the tax and shall give him, the assessor, and the Louisiana Tax Commission notice at the time of payment of his intention to file suit for the recovery of the tax.  Upon receipt of notice, the amount paid shall be segregated and held by the officer for a period of thirty days.  If a suit is timely filed contesting the correctness of the assessment pursuant to R.S. 47:1856, 1857, or 1998 and seeking the recovery of the tax, then that portion of the taxes paid that are in dispute shall be deemed as paid under protest, and that amount shall be segregated and shall be further held pending the outcome of the suit.  The portion of the taxes that is paid by the tax debtor to the officer and is neither in dispute nor the subject of the suit contesting the correctness shall not be made subject to the protest.

(3)  If the tax debtor prevails, the officer shall refund the amount to the tax debtor with interest at the actual rate earned on the money paid under protest in the escrow account during the period from the date such funds were received by the officer to the date of the refund.  If the tax debtor does not prevail, the tax debtor shall be liable for the additional taxes together with interest at the rate set forth above during the period from the date the notice of intention to file suit for recovery of taxes was given to the officer until the date the taxes are paid.

B.  The right to sue for recovery of a tax paid under protest as provided in this Section shall afford a legal remedy and right of action in any state or federal court having jurisdiction of the parties and subject matter for a full and complete adjudication of all questions arising in the enforcement of the right respecting the legality of any tax accrued or accruing or the method of enforcement.  In any such suit, service of process upon the officer or agency designated and provided for in R.S. 47:1998(A)(2) or (B)(3), or Subsection A of this Section, shall be required.

C.  The right to sue for recovery of a tax paid under protest as provided in this Section shall afford a legal remedy and right of action at law in the state or federal courts where any tax or the collection thereof is claimed to be an unlawful burden upon interstate commerce, or in violation of any act of the Congress of the United States, the Constitution of the United States, or the constitution of the state.  Upon request of a tax debtor and upon proper showing by the tax debtor that the principle of law involved in an additional assessment is already pending before the courts for judicial determination, the tax debtor, upon agreement to abide by the pending decision of the courts, may pay the additional assessment under protest but need not file an additional suit.  In such cases, the tax so paid under protest shall be segregated and held by the officer designated by law for the collection of the tax until the question of law involved has been determined by the courts and shall then be disposed of as provided in the decision of the court.

D.  An assessment valuation or claim of exemption shall be challenged only pursuant to the method or procedures as provided first in R.S. 47:1992, then in R.S. 47:1989, and finally in R.S. 47:1998.

E.  Any tax debtor in the state who has paid his disputed taxes under protest as provided in this Section and who has filed suit under the provisions of R.S. 47:1856, 1857, or 1998 shall cause to be served in the suit notice to the officer or officers designated for the collection of taxes in the parish or parishes in which the property is located, the assessor or assessors for the parish or district, or parishes or districts, in which the property is located, and the chairman of the Louisiana Tax Commission.  This notice shall be sufficient to cause the officer or officers to further hold the amount segregated pending the outcome of the suit.

Acts 2008, No. 819, 1, eff. Jan. 1, 2009.