New Jersey Tax Amnesty Program Now Available – Take Advantage or Face An Additional Penalty

The New Jersey Division of Taxation is running a tax amnesty program from November 15, 2018 until January 15, 2019. The program applies to most state tax liabilities and applies to returns due on or after

February 1, 2009, and prior to September 1, 2017. Taxpayers who participate in the program will receive a waiver of all penalties and fees, as well as half of the interest due on the outstanding tax liabilities. On the other hand, if a taxpayer has outstanding taxes covered by the program and fails to pay these taxes during the amnesty period, an additional 5% penalty will be imposed on the outstanding amounts. The 5% amnesty penalty cannot be waived or abated.

What taxes are included?

The NJ Division of Taxation has provided an extensive list of the taxes that are and are not included in the amnesty program. Most taxes are included, with some of the notable exceptions being local property taxes, payroll taxes (other than withholding of Gross Income Tax), annual report fees, and motor carrier road use taxes.

How do I file for amnesty?

The steps taxpayers need to take in order to enter the program vary based on their individual situation. The Division of Taxation has mailed notices to taxpayers it has identified as potentially being eligible. If you have received a notice, it contains an ID and PIN that you will use to log in to the Amnesty Processing Center and proceed with the program. Taxpayers that did not receive a notice but would still like to benefit from the program may do so through the state’s Non-Outreach Portal. If a tax return was not previously filed, the return must be filed without payment. The payment should then be made through the Amnesty Processing Center.

What else do I need to know?

  • Any tax period not fully satisfied under the program will be subject to normal penalties and interest, as well as the 5% additional penalty.
  • Payments made under amnesty will not be eligible for refunds or credits (for example, if the taxpayer overpays or is found ineligible).
  • Taxpayers under criminal investigation are not eligible for amnesty. Taxpayers who have filed an administrative or judicial appeal may only participate in amnesty if they withdraw the appeal, waive all rights to a future appeal, and receive written approval from the Director of the Division. Taxpayers who are currently on a payment plan should contact their caseworker to determine how the amnesty program would be applied to them.
  • Returns submitted as part of the program are subject to the same audit process as other returns, although the Division of Taxation has stated that participation in the program will not increase the chance of being selected for an audit.
  • Businesses not currently registered in New Jersey may participate, but they must register first.

The Division of Taxation has created a website dedicated to the NJ Tax Amnesty program, which enables taxpayers to join the program and find helpful guidance and FAQ’s. For more information about how NJ Tax Amnesty may benefit you, please contact your Hertzbach Tax Advisor at 410-363-3200 or email us at info@hertzbach.com.

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