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NJ Tax Amnesty: Frequently Asked Questions

Sam Fisher, CPA of Middlesex County shares information on NJ tax amnesty with frequently asked questions you should know

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What is a tax amnesty?

New Jersey Tax Amnesty is a limited time opportunity that allows you to become free of New Jersey tax debt. If you pay the State taxes you owe and file your late tax returns, we will waive most penalties and reduce interest.

What are the benefits of the New Jersey Tax Amnesty?

You will only pay the amount of tax you owe and one-half of the balance of interest due (as of November 1, 2018), without any penalties, Referral Cost Recovery Fees, or cost of collection fees. You also avoid a 5% amnesty penalty that we impose on all eligible tax balances remaining after the amnesty period ends. The amnesty penalty cannot be waived or abated.

When will amnesty be available?

The amnesty period begins November 15, 2018 and ends January 15, 2019. Most taxpayers will be notified by mail on or about November 15th. This notice will provide instructions on how to participate in the program.

What tax periods are included?

Tax liabilities incurred for tax returns due on or after February 1, 2009 and prior to September 1, 2017 are eligible for amnesty.

If I participate in amnesty, do I become an audit target or do my chances for audit increase?

No. Participation in amnesty neither increases nor decreases your chances for audit selection. A tax liability under amnesty is subject to the same verification and assessment as all other liabilities.

Does everyone qualify for amnesty?

Almost everyone qualifies for amnesty. If you have filed an administrative or judicial appeal related to a tax assessment, you may participate in amnesty only if you withdraw your appeal, waive all rights to a future appeal, and receive written approval from the Director of the Division. You are not eligible for amnesty if you are under criminal investigation or charge for a State tax matter by a county prosecutor or New Jersey’s Attorney General. 

Can amnesty be denied?

Yes. Amnesty can be denied if:

  • • You do not qualify for amnesty.
  • • You fail to complete all the terms of the agreement under which this amnesty is being offered (acknowledging the Amnesty Waiver Statement, filing appropriate returns, and making full payment for the amnesty amount due).
  • • You submit a payment that is dishonored (bounced, rejected).
  • • You were not granted specific approval from the Director of the Division of Taxation for tax matters pending before the Conference and Appeals Branch or the Tax Court of New Jersey (or other judicial body).