How long can I claim my spouse’s veteran exemption?

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Q. My husband, a veteran, passed away in 2018. As his widow, do I qualify for his New Jersey tax deduction in 2019?
— Proud wife

A. We’re sorry to hear about your husband.

Beginning with the 2017 tax year, a new veteran’s exemption in the amount of $3,000 was made available to qualifying taxpayers in New Jersey.

In order to qualify, a taxpayer must have been in the military and honorably discharged from active duty, said Cynthia Fusillo, a certified public accountant with Lassus Wherley, a subsidiary of Peapack-Gladstone Bank, in New Providence.

This exemption is in addition to other exemptions, she said.

Official documentation must be presented once in order to prove a taxpayer’s status as a qualifying veteran, such as form DD214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty, Fusillo said. There are other documents that qualify as proof as well and the entire list may be found on the Division of Taxation’s website.

Now, to your specific situation.

“A taxpayer whose qualifying spouse died during the year can still claim the exemption of the deceased spouse in the year of death,” Fusillo said. ““However, the surviving spouse will not be able to claim this exemption in future years.”

Unfortunately, in your case, 2018 would be the last year you are able to claim the veteran’s exemption on your jointly filed tax return, Fusillo said.

Email your questions to moc.p1563605921leHye1563605921noMJN1563605921@ksA1563605921.

This story was originally published on June 24, 2019.

NJMoneyHelp.com presents certain general financial planning principles and advice, but should never be viewed as a substitute for obtaining advice from a personal professional advisor who understands your unique individual circumstances.

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