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Department of Taxation and Finance

Income tax highlights for 2019

General changes for 2019

  • New York State driver’s license suspension program

    Beginning on July 11, 2019, the criteria for challenging a driver’s license suspension by the Tax Department is expanded to include taxpayers who:

    • receive public assistance or supplemental security income; or
       
    • can demonstrate that the suspension of their driver’s license will cause them undue economic hardship.
       

    For more information, search: Driver’s license suspension, on our website.

  • Tax preparer penalties

    Tax preparer penalties relating to an understatement of liability or failure to sign a return or claim for refund has been updated to:

    • clarify the penalties and penalty amounts that may be imposed, effective April 12, 2019, against preparers who take positions on returns or credit claims that are not properly supported by the Tax Law; and
       
    • ensure that the penalties for failing to sign a return and for failing to provide a required identification number on a return apply to all tax preparers, for returns filed or required to be filed for tax years beginning in tax year 2019.
       
  • Treatment of certain gambling winnings

    Beginning in tax year 2019, New York State withholding is required for any gambling winnings from a wagering transaction within New York State if the proceeds from the wager are subject to federal withholding. Also, the New York source income of a nonresident individual must now include gambling winnings in excess of $5,000 from wagering transactions within New York State.

  • Electronic filing and payment mandates

    These mandates have been extended through December 31, 2024.

  • Tax shelter provisions

    The tax shelter penalty and reporting requirements have been extended through July 1, 2024.

  • Top personal income tax bracket and rate

    The top tax bracket, tax rate and tax table benefit recapture provisions have been extended through 2024.

  • New federal Form 1040-SR, U.S. Tax Return for Seniors

    If you filed federal Form 1040-SR, all references to federal Form 1040 and its related schedules in Form IT-201, its instructions, and any forms submitted with Form IT-201 and their related instructions, should be read as a reference to federal Form 1040-SR.

Changes to existing credits 

  • Clean heating fuel credit

    This credit has been extended through December 31, 2022. See Form IT-241, Clean Heating Fuel Credit, and its instructions.

  • Empire State film production and film post-production credits

    These credits have been extended through December 31, 2024. See Form IT-248, Empire State Film Production Credit, Form IT-261, Empire State Film Post-Production Credit, and their instructions.

  • Workers with disabilities tax credit

    This credit has been extended through December 31, 2022. See Form IT-644, Workers with Disabilities Tax Credit, and its instructions.

  • Empire State commercial production credit

    Beginning in tax year 2019, the credit allocation and computation have changed along with the definition of qualified commercial, and qualified commercial production company. See Form IT-246, Claim for Empire State Commercial Production Credit, and its instructions.

  • Employee training incentive program tax credit

    Beginning on April 12, 2019, businesses may now receive the employee training incentive program tax credit if they conduct their own training and are otherwise eligible. Also, the definition of eligible training has been expanded to include an internship program in software development or clean energy. See Form IT-646, Employee Training Incentive Program Tax Credit, and its instructions.

  • Farm workforce retention credit

    Beginning in tax year 2019, the definition of farming for purposes of the farm workforce retention credit has been expanded and the definition of an eligible farm employee has been amended. See Form IT-647, Farm Workforce Retention Credit, and its instructions.

  • Historic homeownership rehabilitation credit

    Beginning in tax year 2019, the credit has been expanded to include a residence located in a city with a population of less than one million with a poverty rate greater than 15%. See Form IT-237, Claim for Historic Homeownership Rehabilitation Credit, and its instructions.

  • EZ capital tax credit

    The recapture provision has expired and the credit form is now used for carry forward claims only. See Form IT-602, Claim for EZ Capital Tax Credit.

New credits

  • Employer Compensation Expense Program (ECEP) wage credit

    Beginning with tax year 2019, there is a credit available for individuals that worked for an employer that elected to participate in the ECEP and that had wages and compensation for the year that exceeded $40,000. See Form IT-226, Employer Compensation Expense Program Wage Credit.

  • Contributions to certain funds credit

    Beginning with tax year 2019, there is a credit available for individuals who contribute to certain funds. Contributions to the charitable gift trust fund are eligible for a credit in the tax year immediately following the year the contributions were made. Contributions made to the Health Research Inc, State University of New York Impact Foundation, and Research Foundation of the City University of New York organizations are eligible for a credit for the tax year the contributions were made. See Form IT-228, Contributions to Certain Funds Credit, and its instructions.

New and revised income modifications

  • Alimony or separate maintenance payments received or paid

    A new addition modification must be made if you received any applicable alimony or separate maintenance payments during the tax year. A new subtraction modification is allowed if you made any applicable alimony or separate maintenance payments during the tax year.

  • Volunteer firefighter enhanced cancer disability benefits

    A new subtraction modification is allowed if you were an eligible volunteer firefighter who received insurance payments related to cancer disability benefits.

See Form IT-225, New York State Modifications, and its instructions for more information on these and other income modifications.

New Voluntary Contributions

  • Gifts to Life Pass It On Fund

    Taxpayers may donate any whole dollar amount to be used for organ transplant research and education as well as grants to not-for-profit corporations in New York which are incorporated for increasing and promoting organ and tissue donation awareness.

  • Gifts to New York State ALS Research and Education Fund

    Taxpayers may donate any whole dollar amount to be used to provide grants to the Greater New York ALS Association and the ALS Association Upstate New York Chapter for research and education projects.

  • Gifts for School-Based Health Centers

    Taxpayers may donate any whole dollar amount to be used for the expansion of medical services at existing school-based health centers.

  • Gifts to Food Banks Fund

    Taxpayers may donate any whole dollar amount to be used for grants to regional food banks.

  • New York State Council on the Arts

    Taxpayers may donate any whole dollar amount to be used to foster arts and cultural programming throughout the state and to support the New York State Council on the Arts.

For more information on these and other voluntary contributions, see new Form IT-227, New York State Voluntary Contributions, and search: IT-227, on our website.

New special condition codes

If you qualify for any of the special condition codes below, you must enter the new specified 2-character code(s) in the Item G box (IT-201) or Item F box (IT-203).

  • Request an installment payment agreement

    Enter code C2 if you are unable to pay your tax due in full by April 15, 2020, and would like to request an installment payment agreement (IPA).

  • Veterans Benefits and Transition Act of 2018 election

    Enter code M4 if as a civilian spouse of a military servicemember you are making an election to use the same state of legal residence as the servicemember for state income tax purposes.

For more information on these and other special condition codes, see Form IT-201-I and Form IT-203-I.

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