I missed my Senior Freeze application. What happens now?

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Q. I have been with the Senior Freeze program since 2006. I have always sent in my PTR-2 applications on time and received all reimbursements I was due. I didn’t realize I never received the application for 2017, therefore I never applied for that year. I just received form PTR-1 for the year 2018. Does this mean I lose my reimbursement for 2017?
— Still working

A. You don’t want to lose your Senior Freeze property tax break.

If you didn’t receive an application for 2017, it may be because you were not eligible, said Gerard Papetti, a certified financial planner and certified public accountant with U.S. Financial Services in Fairfield.

To qualify, you must be age 65 or older as of Dec. 31, 2016 or receiving federal Social Security disability benefit payments on or before Dec. 31, 2016 and on or before Dec. 31, 2017.

Also, you must have lived in New Jersey continuously since Dec. 31, 2006 or earlier as a homeowner or renter, and you must have owned and lived in your home since Dec. 31, 2013 or earlier and you still owned and lived in that home on Dec. 31, 2017, Papetti said.

There’s more. You must have paid the full amount of the property taxes on your home for 2016 by June 1, 2017 and for 2017, by June 1, 2018.

Your total income must have been $87,007 or less for 2016 and $87,268 or less for 2017.

Papetti said the filing due date for 2017 Form PTR-1 was Oct. 31, 2018.

“If you were eligible and did not file your 2017 PTR-1 by the due date, you will not receive a Senior Freeze benefit but you should still file late as the filing will preserve your base year,” he said. “The base year is important as it freezes the property tax at that amount for the purposes of calculating the annual Senior Freeze benefit.”

To obtain a 2017 Form PTR-1 and to confirm if you were eligible, call the Senior Freeze Hotline at (800) 882-6597.

Email your questions to moc.p1568944159leHye1568944159noMJN1568944159@ksA1568944159.

This story was originally published on May 13, 2019.

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