Form D.V.S.S.E. (Rev. February 2007) - Claim for Property Tax Exemption of Disabled Veteran
APPLICATION FILING PERIOD - File this form with the municipal tax assessor at any time during the tax year.
Partial or prorated exemption is permitted for the remainder of any taxable year from the date ownership or title to the dwelling house is acquired provided all other eligibility requirements are met. For example, where application is filed on June 1st of the tax year for exemption on a dwelling house acquired on February 14th of the tax year, the assessed value is to be prorated for taxation purposes so that 44/365th's of the total assessment would be taxable and 321/365th's would be exempt.
1. have had active wartime service in United States Armed Forces and been honorably discharged;
2. have a United States Veterans Administration certification of wartime service-connected disability as described under #5 on front of this DVSSE Claim;
3. wholly own or hold legal title to the dwelling house for which exemption is claimed;
4. occupy the dwelling house as the principal residence;
5. be a citizen and legal or domiciliary resident of New Jersey.
B. Surviving Spouse/Surviving Civil Union Partner/Surviving Domestic Partner Claimant (must meet all 6 requirements)
1. document that the deceased veteran or serviceperson was a citizen and resident of New Jersey at death who had active wartime service in the United States Armed Forces and who was honorably discharged or who died on active wartime duty;
2. document that the deceased veteran had V. A. certified wartime service-connected disability;
3. not have remarried/formed a new civil union or a new registered domestic partnership;
4. wholly own or hold legal title to the claimed dwelling house;
5. occupy the dwelling house as the principal residence;
6. be a citizen and legal or domiciliary resident of New Jersey.
NOTE **Claimants must inform the assessor of any change in status which may affect their continued entitlement to the exemption.
DWELLING HOUSE & CURTILAGE DEFINED - dwelling house means any one-family building or structure or unit in a horizontal property regime or condominium or multiple-family building or structure on that portion occupied by the claimant as his legal residence including any outhouses or appurtenances used for the dwelling's fair enjoyment. Curtilage means the enclosed space of ground and buildings immediately surrounding the dwelling house and enjoyed with it for its more convenient occupation.
DISABILITY DEFINED - means a wartime service-connected disability as described under #5 on front of this claim and certified as such by the United States Veterans Administration.
VETERAN DEFINED - means any New Jersey citizen and resident honorably discharged from active wartime service in the United States Armed Forces.
For assistance in documenting veterans' status, contact the NJ Department of Military and Veterans Affairs at (609) 530-6958 or (609) 530-6854. The United States Veterans Administration can be reached at 1-800-827-1000.
SURVIVING SPOUSE/SURVIVING CIVIL UNION PARTNER/SURVIVING DOMESTIC PARTNER DEFINED - means the lawful widow or widower/civil union partner/domestic partner of a deceased disabled veteran or serviceperson who has not remarried/formed a new civil union/ or a new registered domestic partnership.
ACTIVE SERVICE TIME OF WAR DEFINED - means military service during one or more of the specific periods listed under #4 on front of this claim.
CITIZEN AND RESIDENT DEFINED - United States Citizenship is not required. Resident for purposes of this exemption means an individual who is legally domiciled in New Jersey. Domicile is the place you regard as your permanent home - the place you intend to return to after a period of absence. You may have only one legal domicile even though you may have more than one place of residence. Seasonal or temporary residence in this State, of whatever duration, does not constitute domicile. Absence from the State for a 12 month period is prima facie evidence of abandonment of domicile.
DOCUMENTARY PROOFS REQUIRED - Each assessor may require such proofs necessary to establish claimant's exemption entitlement and photocopies of any documents should be attached to DVSSE Claim as part of the application record.
MILITARY RECORDS - Certificate of Honorable Discharge or Release, Form DD214, or Military Notification of Death or Certification of United States Veterans Administration.
DISABILITY - Veterans Administration Certification of Disability.
SURVIVING SPOUSE/SURVIVING CIVIL UNION PARTNER/SURVIVING DOMESTIC PARTNER - Death Certificate of Decedent, marriage license/civil union license/domestic partnership registration certificate.
OWNERSHIP - Real property deed, executory contract for property purchase, or Last Will and Testament if by devise, or if intestate or without a will give names and relationships of decedent's heirs-at-law.
RESIDENCY - New Jersey driver's license or motor vehicle registration, voter's registration, etc.
APPEALS - A claimant may appeal any unfavorable determination by the assessor to the County Board of Taxation annually on or before April 1.
Form I.S. - Initial Statement of Organization Claiming Property Tax Exemption
Form F.S. - Further Statement of Organization Claiming Property Tax Exemption
GENERAL ELIGIBILITY: Real property tax exemption is determined by:
1. the organization’s purpose
2. the property’s use as of October 1 of the pretax year
3. the absence, presence, degree and use of profits
4. the property’s ownership as of October 1 of the pretax year
5. incorporation of the organization or its authorization to operate in New Jersey
6. land area or existing buildings
7. timely application as of November 1 of the pretax year
Because eligibility criteria varies from statute to statute, specific questions regarding your organization’s exemption requirements should be directed to the municipal assessor in the taxing district where the property is located.
LAND & BUILDINGS: Land and building criteria vary depending on statute under which exemption is claimed. Although there are some exceptions; such as cemetery and conservation land, vacant land IS NOT generally exempt even when owned by an otherwise exempt organization. In most cases, in the absence of buildings used for one of the exempt purposes specified by statute, independent vacant land is not exempt. Also most statutes impose acreage limits on exemptible land area. A common limit is five acres per exempt building. Please review applicable statute.
OWNERSHIP: Property must be owned by the organization claiming exemption as of October 1 of the pretax year. For example, possession of legal title as of October 1, 2000 would fulfill the ownership prerequisite for exemption for tax year 2001. In most cases, full legal title must be acquired; equitable title is insufficient. However, certain statutes by specific provision allow for equitable or beneficial ownership interest. Please review the statute under which you are requesting exemption with respect to eligible ownership.
EXEMPT USE TEST-REASONABLE NECESSITY: Use must be a qualifying exempt use. Property’s use must be an integral part of the exempt organization’s operations, not just a convenience, and reasonably necessary for the proper and efficient fulfillment of the organization’s exempt purpose.
ACTUAL USE: Property must be actually used for a permitted or qualifying use pursuant to the statute under which exemption is sought. Future use; for-profit use; and private use are ineligible. Occasional, incidental nonexempt use does not in itself invalidate exemption.
PARTIAL (PRORATED) USE v. EXCLUSIVE USE: Whether a property must be used solely or exclusively for its exempt purpose or if a proration is permitted depends upon the statutory language specific to that organization. For instance, schools, hospitals, religious and charitable organizations allow prorated exempt/taxable use while volunteer first-aid squads and associations to prevent cruelty to animals must meet the exclusive or singular use criteria. Please review applicable statute.
NONPROFIT STATUS: Federal 501(c)(3) status is not controlling with respect to New Jersey property tax exemptions. A monetary surplus, rather than a loss, does not necessarily indicate a for-profit, commercial operation. Provided moneys go back into operation of exempt organization, exemption is permissible. However, a for-profit motive, as evidenced by the facts, invalidates exemption, i.e., is the organization’s structure, financial agreements, tuitions, fees set etc. with the intent to make a profit.
DOCUMENTARY PROOFS: N.J.S.A.54:4-4.4 provides, Each assessor may at any time inquire into a claimant’s right to continue an exemption and for that purpose he may require the submission of such documentation as he considers necessary to determine the claimant’s continuing right to exemption. Claimants may be asked to provide: proof of income via audited financial statements, tax return copies; proof of ownership via deed; proof of use via lease/rental agreements, itinerary/calendar of events & organization’s promotional literature; proof of organization’s purpose via certificate of incorporation, articles of association, charter or mission statement, and constitution and by-laws.
Burden of proof is on exemption claimant; it is not the responsibility of the assessor to seek out claimant or to bring claimant into exemption compliance.
Educational, religious, charitable organizations - N.J.S.A.54:4-3.6
Firefighter organizations - N.J.S.A.54:4-3.10 & 54:4-3.13
Burial grounds & cemeteries - N.J.S.A.54:4-3.9 & N.J.S.A.8A:5-10
Youth organizations - N.J.S.A.54:4-3.24
Fraternal organizations - N.J.S.A.54:4-3.26
Disaster relief organizations - N.J.S.A.54:4-3.27
District Supervisor Religious Organization - N.J.S.A.54:4-3.35
Historic Sites - N.J.S.A.54:4-3.52
Conservation/Recreation Land - N.J.S.A.54:4-3.64
FURTHER STATEMENT REQUIRED: Every third year as of November 1 after approval of the initial statement, a further statement is to be filed with the municipal assessor.
APPEALS: Any unfavorable determination by the assessor may be appealed to the County Board of Taxation annually on or before April 1.