Deadline for unpaid Cook County property taxes is Friday

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CHICAGO — Elected officials and faith leaders are working to warn thousands of property owners about Friday’s deadline for the annual Cook County Tax Sale.

The owners of about 37,600 parcels have delinquent taxes, making them vulnerable to having their land and buildings sold out from under them.

Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas was joined at the news conference Monday by several Chicago aldermen and members of the clergy who are reaching out to members of their communities who are at risk.

About 16,000 tax bills have been returned to the post office because property owners couldn’t be reached.

Pappas says many of those with unpaid taxes are elderly or disabled, and in many cases, they simply can’t get to the mailbox, which then fills up. Tax bills don’t get delivered.

Other addresses are entered improperly at closings, officials said, meaning new owners never get their tax bills because those bills are sent to erroneous addresses.

Passes also says some 126,000 seniors failed to apply for their senior exemptions this year, which could lower their taxes by hundreds of dollars.

The exemption must be applied for each year, unlike a homeowner’s exemption, which renews automatically.

Property owners can learn if they have late taxes and pay them online, or by phone, by entering a 14 digit PIN number.