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Do I Have to File a New Jersey Nonresident Tax Return?

Posted by on June 3, 2013
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Do I Have to File a New Jersey Nonresident Tax Return?

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.

36 Responses to “Do I Have to File a New Jersey Nonresident Tax Return?”

  1. James Rockwell says:

    I was a primary resident of Florida in 2013 but owned a home in NJ from Jan 1 to March 15 at which time I sold the New Jersey home. At the time my NJ residence was sold I paid $2500 for the NJ exit tax. Do I file NJ state tax to get that refunded to me?

    • admin says:

      Hi James,

      In most cases, this is how it works in the sale of a residence in NJ. If you lost money on the sale, or there is no capital gain tax to pay, you get issued your entire 2% back. If there is a capital gain to pay, it would be deducted from the estimated tax payment and the rest would be refunded to you.

  2. Amol says:

    I live in IL currently. I am contemplating a job in NYC that allows me to fly back to IL on weekends. My wife will continue to earn and stay in IL. I am however, thinking of renting in NJ to avoid the NYC tax. I will have NO NJ income. From what I am reading, I will be considered a NJ nonresident (as I will be claiming IL to be my domicile) but won’t be required to file a NJ state tax. Is that correct?

    • admin says:

      Hi Amol,

      This is correct. based on what you have stated above, your will still remain a resident of IL and a nonresident of NJ. However, IF your employer withholds NJ taxes, you should file a nonresident tax return with the state of NJ to report the tax you paid out of your income to that state.

  3. Linda Romano says:

    I retired Jan 1, 2015 from NJ State Police, and lived in NJ that entire year. On Jan 2, 2016, I moved to VA & now am being told I have to file a non-resident form on my taxes. Is this every year? Will I have to pay tax to the state of Virginia as well as state of NJ? I own no property in NJ or Virginia. This certainly doesn’t seem right to me.

    • admin says:

      Hello Linda,

      Based on the information you have provided to us, you will only be required to file a VA state return. You are only required to file a NJ non-resident state return if you have earned income from NJ and have been taxed on this income. You may refer back to this blog for the qualifications to be a non-resident of NJ.

  4. Tyler says:

    I have a sales territory that includes NJ and NYC. I live and work out of NYC and do not spend any nights in NJ, but I do visit NJ approximately 3-4 times a month. Right now my taxes are being withheld as if both states have the right to tax my full $80,000 base salary. How can I figure out what I’ll owe to NJ so that I can dial back the amount they are withholding?


    • admin says:

      Hello Tyler,

      You have indicated that you have a sales territory that includes both NJ and NY. You will then be taxed for both states. You will need to file a resident state return for NY and a non-resident state return for NJ. No need to worry, NY offers a non-refundable credit for the taxes paid to NJ. Prior Tax makes it easy to file both non-resident and resident state returns.

  5. James says:


    I have been renting and living in New Jersey for the past 3 years and will be moving to Hong Kong next month to take on a new job, for tax year 2018 filing, would I still have to file a NJ state tax return? I do not own a place in the US at all and have been moving around different states in the past 10 years for different jobs, so what should I consider as my permanent home? If my current rental is to be considered as my permanent home, wouldn’t I be assume that my future rental in Hong Kong as a new permanent home?

    • admin says:

      Unfortunately since we do not prepare or specialize in tax returns containing foreign residency and/or foreign income information, we will not be able to address your question. We apologize for the inconvenience.

  6. Barb says:

    My husband and I live in NY. We vacationed in Atlantic City, NJ for 1 week in 2016 and my husband won $1922 at the casino, getting a W2-G form. Do we have to file a non resident tax return for this and would we include all of our annual income (all from NYS) on the NJ tax return?

    • admin says:

      Since you have received a W-2G from NJ for your NJ gambling winnings, you will need to file a NJ non-resident form unless your gross income falls below a specific income threshold. For non-resident state tax forms, the income that the state taxes is the income that is earned specifically in that state. You won’t have to report all of your income earned elsewhere.

  7. Krista says:

    I lived and worked in OH from Jan thru May. I switched jobs and moved to NJ from June – Dec. According to the guidelines, I’m a resident because it’s just over 183 days and I bought a house. However, I’m being taxed for the whole year and owe a lot, but was only here seven months. How do I get credited for the months I didn’t live or work in NJ?

    • admin says:

      The state that is taxing your income is indicated in box 15 for the income earned in that state. Your income statements should reflect this, as you should be only paying income earned in the state that it was earned from. You can use to file your 2 part year resident returns with ease.

  8. Caroline says:

    My husband I are UK residents and are buying a property in New Jersey which will be rented out. Do we pay tax on the income received in both the US and the UK. The income will be approx $4000.

    • admin says:

      Unfortunately, we do not handle returns that may contain foreign information or fall under foreign jurisdiction, so we are unable to advise you on how you should best go about filing your return.

  9. martin says:

    I am filing a NJ-1040-NR tax form. If I made a profit on the sale of a mutual fund, do I have to pay taxes in NJ?

    • admin says:

      Profit made through a sale of a mutual fund is considered capital gains and capital gains are a source of income. While filing your NJ-1040-NR Tax form you will need to report the income earned from the sale and have taxes paid from it as well.

  10. VShah says:


    I was working in NY for the whole of 2015 till March 2016 and staying in NJ for the same period.
    Now in March I moved from NJ to work in VA.

    Due to tax deadline, I filed my return of NY as NON resident and as PART YEAR resident for NJ.
    1) My confusion is now how do I file VA return – as a Full year resident or as a Part year resident ?
    2) IF I am eligible to claim any Tax credit on my VA paid to NY or NJ?

    • admin says:

      Hello Vshah,

      If you earned income to VA you will be taxed on income earned in VA, as a part year resident. You are unable to claim a tax credit.

  11. Mike says:

    I moved to FL due to job relocation in June 2016 and have established residency in FL. My wife and kids still live in NJ. Do i need to file for NJ tax? should I file NJ tax separately from my wife?

    • admin says:

      As a married couple, you should be aware that you can file separate state tax returns, even if you file a joint federal return. Married filing jointly status provides the greatest benefit. Even though it makes sense to file a joint federal return, if your state situation is complicated enough, it may make sense to file separate state returns. Since FL does not have any state taxes you do not have to file a state return. Your spouse may opt to file a separate state return to report any NJ income that she may have received during her residency.

  12. Merrill Waugh says:

    I am a government employee being transferred to Fort Dix NJ. I will not be renting a home and will be living on post. i am a resident of New Hampshire and return home every week end for two or three days. Do i still have to pay NJ taxes?

  13. Tim Smith says:

    I work for a company in Texas and have permanent home in Texas, but i go to my relatives home in NJ (less than 2 months a year) and works there remotely. Should I file NJ non resident taxes for the 2 months I stayed?

  14. Maury Weintraub says:

    I am a non-resident but have spent substantial time in NJ helping to close my Parents Estate. I have been granted Executor Fees in excess of $100,000 for my services. Is this NJ taxable income? Is income from a NJ Estate taxable to a non-resident? If so, can I allocate my income attributed to time spent in NJ and time in my home State?

    • admin says:

      You may wish to speak with a local accountant or a CPA on this matter. Any income earned within a state is subjected to taxes within the respective state. However, you can receive a non-residential credit for taxes paid to NJ when it comes time to file your residential state income tax return.

  15. Debbie Bearden says:

    Live and work in Ohio, received a W-2 from the company I work for that shows NJ who is present in NJ. I have not gone to NJ, I don’t work in NJ. Do I have to file for NJ at all. I no longer work for this company because of this.

  16. michele ferris says:

    My son is a NJ college student and has income from his University of approximately $998. He is a dependent of mine and lives in New York State with me. Does he need to file a non-resident form for 2017?

    Thank you

  17. Adam Lee says:

    In 2017, my wife and I lived in Texas from Jan to August.We moved to New Jersey in September. My wife earned $6000 gross income in Texas. I worked in NJ as an Independent contractor and earned $18000, and my wife earned $1630. We are filing jointly. Do we have to file NJ income tax return? if so, how much does my wife have to report as her wages, $1630 or $7630. Thank you!

    • admin says:

      Texas does not have a state income tax. Only report the income earned for your New Jersey for your New Jersey state return.

  18. Jan says:

    My husband was an employee of a company based in New Jersey but did not work a single day in New Jersey. His W-2 has state income for both our residence state and New Jersey. No withholding was taken for New Jersey state taxes. Do we have to file a New Jersey Non-Resident Tax Return and pay taxes on the income from the New Jersey-based company?

  19. John d says:

    I recently took a job in Florida where I have established domicile and residence. I work Monday through Thursday in Florida and spend Thursday evening through Monday morning with m.y wife and kids in New Jersey. My income source is Florida based. Based on the above do I have a state tax obligation to New Jersey?

  20. Adj says:

    My husband and I moved from Switzerland to Georgia July 1, 2017. My husband started a job July 24, 2017 with a company based in NJ. He does not work in NJ but is paid out of NJ. We own a home and live in GA. On the nonresident tax form do we need to include our income earned in Switzerland (prior to our move to the US) in Column A?

  21. carrie says:

    Last year I received a payout of over $30,000. from my mothers estate ( the sale of her house). The lawyer claimed that he submitted more than $900.00 to the state of New Jersey for taxes. I have not lived in NJ for more than ten years. I live in a state that has no income tax. How do I get my money back.

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