Find out if you qualify as a New Jersey nonresident and when you have to file a return.
State taxes are one of the most complicated aspects of filing taxes – especially if you have to file more than one.
Generally you have to file a resident return in the state where you live and a nonresident return in any other state from which you receive income. Here are the conditions under which you must file a nonresident return in the state of New Jersey.
Who is a nonresident?
The first thing to get straight is whether or not you actually are a nonresident. New Jersey considers you a nonresident if
- you did not maintain a ‘permanent’ home in New Jersey
- you did maintain a ‘permanent’ home outside New Jersey, and
- you did not spend more than 30 days in New Jersey
You are also a nonresident if
- New Jersey was not your domicile, and you spent 183 days or less there, or
- New Jersey was not your domicile, and you spent more than 183 days there, but you did not maintain a ‘permanent’ home there
When do nonresidents have to file a return?
If you are a nonresident, you have to file a New Jersey return if
- you received New Jersey-source income, and
- your total income from all sources (both inside and outside New Jersey) is greater than the minimum filing threshold
What exactly are the minimum filing thresholds?
The minimum filing threshold is a level of income below which you do not need to file a New Jersey return. They are currently set at
- $20,000 for married/civil union couple filing jointly, head of household, and qualifying widow(er)/surviving civil union partner
- $10,000 for married couple/civil union partners filing separately and single
Again, if your income is below these levels you do not need to file a return.
What about moving to/from New Jersey?
Generally when you move to or from a state you have to file a part-year return there. The same is true for moving in or out of New Jersey.
However, if you had New Jersey-source income during the period of the year when you were not a New Jersey resident, you have to file both a part-year resident return and a nonresident return.
For example, let’s say you live and work in New Jersey. Then, halfway through the year you move to New York but continue working in New Jersey. Come tax time, you will have to file part-year resident returns in both New Jersey and New York. But because you continued to earn money from New Jersey even after you became a resident of New York you have to file a nonresident return on that income.
This is only scraping the surface of state taxes. To make them as simple as possible, consider using PriorTax for either late or current year taxes, federal or state.
Photo via Nicholas A. Tonelli on Flickr.