Tax parcel numbers are unique numbers assigned to every parcel of land in the county by the Commissioner of Revenue. No two tax parcel numbers are the same. They are always 14 digits and typically contain several zeros. Tax parcel numbers can be broken down as follows:
* The first 3 digits equate to the tax map page; the first 0 is a placeholder and doesn't have any relevance.
* The next 2 digits correspond to the tax map page insert, if one exists. If there is no insert, these digits will be zeros.
* The next 2 digits are known as the double-circle, and typically indicate major subdivisions of land. If there is no double-circle, these digits will be zeros.
* The next 2 digits correspond to the block number. These can be thought of as subdivisions within subdivisions. Block numbers are used in denser or more urban areas, such as the towns and Lake of the Woods. Zeros indicate the parcel is not within a block.
* The next 4 digits correspond to the lot number. Zeros before the actual lot number are placeholders and have no relevance.
* The last digit is the sub-lot. A sub-lot value other than 0 typically indicates that the lot was subdivided at some point in the past.
In everyday speech, tax parcel numbers have shorthand. Examples: parcel number 07700000000500 can be described as 77-50; parcel number 02600050001230 can be described as 26-((5))-123. Either method may be used for searching the county's Geographic Information System (GIS) to identify a property, but the shorthand requires use of the advanced search function of the GIS.