Tax Day in NJ now May 17

State moves deadline to match IRS delay announced earlier this week

New Jersey will extend its deadline for filing income taxes to May 17, following the move this week by the federal government.

The state, however, will still require any estimated tax payments for the first quarter of 2021 that were due on April 15.

Just as with the IRS and its extension, New Jersey will not require people to file any forms requesting the extension to May 17.

“As we continue the arduous job of emerging from this pandemic, we are extending this relief to taxpayers in what we know is a very difficult time,” Gov. Phil Murphy said Friday in announcing the delay. “Our hope is that the extension gives taxpayers with difficult circumstances, including filings made more complicated by various relief programs and employment changes, the extra the time they may need.”

After the federal delay was announced, an effort was launched to convince state officials to move quickly to align the two tax deadlines since most people do their state and federal taxes at the same time.

Treasury will release ‘formal guidance’ soon

State officials said Friday they used discretionary powers to make the delay and would release “formal guidance” on the decision soon.

“It is our hope that this additional time will provide a measure of relief for those who have faced challenges created by the pandemic,” Treasurer Eiizabeth Maher Muoio said in a statement. “This is exactly the type of emergent situation that our existing statutory authority was designed to address.”

The federal extension announced by the IRS on Wednesday is automatic and does not require a separate application or form. No fees, penalties or interest will be charged for payments received by May 17, according to the IRS.

Last year, the federal government postponed the traditional April 15 tax deadline to July 15. That move came as shutdown orders were being enacted in New Jersey and in many other states to slow the rate of new COVID-19 infections.

New Jersey eventually followed suit, but not until the very last minute, causing widespread confusion among taxpayers and accountants.

Murphy and lawmakers also extended the state’s fiscal year by three months last year in response to the pandemic since the delayed tax deadline meant final payments would be collected after the state’s traditional fiscal year ended on June 30.

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