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New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has announced that the state and Amazon.com have reached an agreement in which Amazon will voluntarily begin to collect and remit New Jersey sales tax on purchases by New Jersey consumers by July 1, 2013 or as of the effective date of federal legislation concerning state sales tax collection from out-of-state retailers, whichever is earlier. Governor Christie also announced that Amazon plans to begin construction of two fulfillment distribution centers in New Jersey in 2013, contingent on the receipt of economic development incentives. (Press Release, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, May 30, 2012)

(06/22/2012)

New Jersey has issued a revised sales and use tax notice informing taxpayers that as a result of legislation that became effective April 1, 2011, all Urban Enterprise Zone (UEZ) businesses are eligible to receive a sales tax exemption at the point of purchase regardless of annual gross receipts generated in the prior annual tax period. The changes permit any duly certified qualified UEZ business to claim a sales tax exemption at the point of purchase for eligible exempt purchases of tangible personal property and services that are used or consumed exclusively at the UEZ business location when an Urban Enterprise Zone Exempt Purchase Certificate (UZ-5) is issued to sellers. The law also sets forth two major changes in the UEZ refund process. First, all refund claims based on the UEZ purchase exemption are subject to a one year statute of limitations. The four year statute of limitations period for refund claims for the erroneous payment of sales or use tax no longer applies. Second, as of April 1, 2011, the one year statute of limitations no longer applies from the date of sale. Instead, the one year statute of limitations applies from the date of payment of the tax.

The following rules apply to transactions prior to April 1, 2011. For UEZ businesses that did not qualify for the point-of-purchase exemption (that were not small qualified businesses), refund claims may be filed for purchases having an invoice date on or before March 31, 2011. These claims may still be filed within one year from the date of sale using form A-3730-UEZ. UEZ businesses that did not qualify for the point-of-purchase exemption had a use tax obligation on purchases where sales tax was not charged and then had to file for a refund. A request for refund of use tax paid by a UEZ business not considered a small qualified business had to be filed within one year from the date of sale or from the date that items were removed from inventory. A UEZ business that was eligible for the point-of-purchase exemption but erroneously paid tax on UEZ exempt purchases could file a refund claim using Form A-3730 within four years of payment of the tax.

The following rules apply to transactions on and after April 1, 2011. Refund claims submitted by any qualifying UEZ business based on the sales and use tax purchase exemption should be filed using Form A-3730-UEZ. UEZ businesses that did not qualify for the point-of-purchase exemption no longer have a use tax obligation for UEZ eligible exempt purchases when no tax was collected or when tax was collected at a lower tax rate than New Jersey’s. Payments made to satisfy audit assessments are included in the shortened time period for filing refund claims. UEZ businesses that pay an assessment after April 1, 2011 have one year from the date of payment of the assessed tax to file a refund for any assessments paid for purchases that were eligible for exemption under the UEZ law. Refunds requested for erroneously paid tax are now subject to the shortened time period for filing refund claims. A UEZ taxpayer that improperly pays tax at the point of purchase after April 1, 2011 has one year from the date of payment of the tax to file a refund for any portion of the tax paid for eligible UEZ exempt purchases. Refund claims based on exemptions other than the UEZ purchase exemption may be submitted using Form A-3730 within four years of payment of the tax. The amended UEZ law does not affect the statute of limitations for filing a refund based on these exemptions. (Notice – Urban Enterprise Zones Refund Procedures Revised, New Jersey Division of Taxation, February 10, 2012)

(05/21/2012)

The New Jersey Division of Taxation has issued guidance regarding its Voluntary Disclosure Program to individual and business taxpayers. The program is intended for taxpayers who realize they have nexus in New Jersey or have an obligation to file taxes. Under the program, they can voluntarily come forward to file the appropriate tax returns and registration materials and pay any outstanding taxes. The benefit to the taxpayer is eligibility for the program’s terms, which include taxpayer anonymity until an agreement is reached as well as not having to pay late filing and late payment penalties. The look-back period for tax obligations is typically four years – the current year plus the prior three years. To be eligible for the program, several requirements must be met. First, the Division of Taxation or its agents must not have made previous contact with the taxpayer. The taxpayer must not already be registered for the taxes they are volunteering and the taxpayer must not currently be under criminal investigation. Finally, the taxpayer must be willing to pay outstanding taxes and file returns for the prior years within a reasonable period of time. (Voluntary Disclosure Program, New Jersey Division of Taxation, August 20, 2010)

(02/06/2011)

The New Jersey Division of Taxation authorized municipalities to impose a 5% surcharge of each admission charge to a major place of amusement that is subject to New Jersey sales tax, effective April 1, 2010. The surcharge must be separately stated on any bill, receipt, invoice or similar document provided to the patron. Guidance on the surcharge has been provided by the Division, including definitions, registration and exemption information, and filing and payment requirements. (News Release, New Jersey Division of Taxation, March 30, 2010)

(04/15/2010)

The New Jersey Division of Taxation has issued a notice informing taxpayers of the new terms and condition of the voluntary disclosure program effective at the close of the 2009 amnesty program, which is June 15, 2009. However, the state will still honor the current terms and conditions for agreements that were entered into prior to May 4, 2009, as long as they are fully executed by June 15, 2009.

The Voluntary Disclosure Program is a means for taxpayers who realize that their activities create nexus for New Jersey state tax purposes to come forward and file the appropriate returns, registration materials, and pay outstanding tax liabilities. A significant change to the program is that the look-back period will change from four years (three years, plus the current year) to seven years (six years, plus the current year). In order to be eligible, taxpayers must not have had any previous contact with the Division or any of its agents, be willing to pay all outstanding tax liabilities, and file the appropriate returns within a reasonable period (60 days). When applying for the program, the state will still allow the taxpayer to remain anonymous pending an agreement. In exchange, the Division will waive the late filing penalties and criminal penalties. A non-abateable penalty of 5% for not taking advantage of the 2009 amnesty program will be imposed. In addition the 5% late payment penalty will be imposed in all instances, along with statutory interest. (Press Release, State of new Jersey Department of the Treasury, Division of Taxation, June 5, 2009)

(06/29/2009)

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