New York State

The Mid-Terms

With 50 seats in the Senate, the Dems still control that Chamber. A win in the Georgia runoff, however, may lessen the burden for Majority Leader Schumer by, perhaps, neutralizing the significance of a certain member of his own party.[i]

Meanwhile, the GOP has claimed “control” of the House by a very thin margin,[ii] but the party’s leadership is already being challenged by its more conservative members.[iii]

On the other side of the aisle, moderate Dems in the House are certainly taking notice of how well the elections went for the “progressive” wing of their party.[iv]

Politics being what it is, would it surprise you if nothing happened in Congress for the next two years? Probably not.
Continue Reading Thinking About Leaving New York? Don’t Forget to Check Your Federal Tax Return

Across the Hudson

Last week, Governor Murphy of New Jersey staked out a position on New York City’s congestion pricing proposal, stating that it “can’t be ‘on the backs of New Jersey commuters.’”[i]

“Whether it’s how we’re taxed by our neighbors or this proposal for a congestion-pricing scheme that would be a huge burden on commuters,” the Governor continued, “we can’t have it both ways.”

Of course, the Governor was referring to New York’s taxation of New Jersey residents who are employed in New York and whose earnings are taxed in New York, for which the New Jersey residents claim a credit against their New Jersey income tax liability on such earnings.[ii]
Continue Reading Push-Back On New York’s Mission to Tax Non-New Yorkers?

Everyone has heard about the affluent, or even not-so-affluent, New Yorkers who have moved to Florida, or to another state,[i] to escape New York’s tax regime, not to mention the cold.

More recently, some of us are encountering New Yorkers who are looking to relocate, not to another state, but to another country.[ii]

Today we’ll consider the New Yorker who is thinking about moving overseas – in no small part because they have had their fill of paying New York taxes[iii] – but who is not willing to give up their U.S. citizenship; they want to maintain their U.S. passport to keep open the option of returning to the U.S. if future circumstances ever warrant such a move.[iv]
Continue Reading When New York Taxpayers Move Overseas

Where is the Economy Heading?

According to the data released Friday by the Department of Labor, the U.S. economy added approximately 528,000 jobs in July, reducing the unemployment rate to 3.5 percent.[i] Although this figure was certainly better than what was expected by many economists, it seems to belie other signs of economic weakness.

Many states, for example, have reported recently that they are experiencing significant declines in estimated tax payments or that they expect declines in revenue from the withholding of personal income taxes.[ii] These developments are being attributed to the performance of the stock market[iii] and to the fact that wages have not kept in step with inflation.[iv]
Continue Reading New York to Taxpayer: “Forget What the Feds Said, You’re a ‘Responsible Person’”

“Summertime and the Living” Isn’t Easy[i]

Summer in the New York Metro Area can be challenging. Some would say it sucks.[ii] It gets really hot. When it rains, it pours – no spritz here. The humidity is oppressive.[iii] Ironically, a forecast of sunny days and clear skies that may draw other “subspecies”[iv] of humans out of their dwellings causes many New Yorkers, instead, to remain indoors, whether it be at home, in air-conditioned shops, or at other artificially cooled venues.
Continue Reading Leaving New York? Can You Prove It?

Escape from New York[i]

According to data released by the IRS earlier this year, the pandemic triggered a “wealth migration” that saw high-tax states like New York lose high-income earners to low-tax jurisdictions such as Florida.[ii]

This weekend, the Wall Street Journal reported that New York’s tax base shrank by $19.5 billion as a result of workers fleeing during a time when lockdown measures allowed employees to work remotely. Other high-tax jurisdictions experienced a similar exodus of workers.

Unfortunately for New York, the migration out of the State began before the pandemic, which does not bode well because, as the Office of the Comptroller recently stated, “the personal income tax is the single largest revenue source for New York, accounting for two of every three tax dollars.”
Continue Reading Statutory Residence in New York: Time to Rethink the “Permanent Place of Abode” Test?

State Finances

Much has been written over the last few weeks about the unprecedented financial cushion that many states have accumulated thanks to federal support prompted by the pandemic and larger-than-expected tax revenue.[i]

However, in the last few days we have started to hear warnings from various sources that state economic forecasts for the remainder of 2022 and for 2023 are likely to be revised downward; for example: “The current global geopolitical crisis, continued uncertainties related to the ongoing pandemic, high inflation, and evolving federal monetary policy could all muddle the revenue outlook for the states.”[ii] Add to that the expiration of federal aid programs, the volatility of the stock markets, and talk of recession.[iii]
Continue Reading Will New York Be Looking At Your Federal Tax Return? Probably

Limited Liability?

Many individual taxpayers who invest in a closely held business, including one organized as a corporation, fail to appreciate there are circumstances in which they may be held personally liable by a state or local taxing authority for the sales tax collected or required to be collected by the business.

In other words, if certain criteria are satisfied, the limited liability protection that an individual shareholder would normally enjoy as a matter of state corporate law, and which they may have assumed – not unreasonably – would shield them from personal responsibility for any and all liabilities of the corporation, including taxes, will be of no avail even where the shareholder has respected the separate legal status of the corporation.[i]
Continue Reading Shareholder Beware: Personal Liability for N.Y. Sales Tax

The 2023 Budget

Last week, the New York Legislature passed the State’s 2022-2023 Budget. The $220 billion Budget reflects an $8 billion increase over last year’s budget (a more than 3 percent jump). It is also $4 billion more than what the Governor had initially proposed. In fact, it is the largest spending bill ever to have been enacted by Albany.

I suppose the explanation is obvious: bolstered by still unspent Federal stimulus money[i] and better than expected tax revenues, the Governor and the Legislature decided to be especially generous to their constituents during this election year.[ii]
Continue Reading The Deduction of Cannabis Business Expenses Following New York’s 2023 Budget

“Yes” to Art, “No” to Tax

Private patronage of the arts. For centuries, artists, museums, and galleries have depended, in no small part, upon the largesse of wealthy families.

Today, as in the past, many of these benefactors are the successful owners or former owners of businesses who can afford to indulge their passion for visual art.[i] Others are investors for whom art represents merely one part of a balanced portfolio.

Continue Reading The Rental of Art Between Related Parties: Applying the Resale Exclusion to the N.Y. Sales Tax