Real Estate Tax Payments Online in Memphis

WASHINGTON (07/31/2000) - Expanding on its telephone payment system, the city of Memphis, Tenn., will soon offer residents the option of paying real estate taxes online using a major credit card.

Treasurer Joseph Lee III said that the city's World Wide Web site ( would be linked within the next few days to Official Payments Corp.'s Web site (, a company that offers electronic payment services.

"I see it as a natural progression to give another alternative to taxpayers," Lee said.

Official Payments will charge residents a convenience fee, based on the amount of the payment. For example, on a bill of $950, a resident will pay a $25 convenience fee, and on a bill of $1,400, the convenience fee is $49.

The convenience fee represents the cost that Official Payments must pay to credit card companies, as well as money taken for a profit. The sliding scale is online at the company's Web site.

Lee said the city is also working on establishing a function on the Web site to allow citizens to pay by check. If given the choice, Lee said, he'd pay by check because of the fee.

The city, which collects $250 million per year in real estate taxes, also has a contract with Official Payments for the telephone service, which allows residents to call a toll free number to pay by credit card.

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