Section: Rebate, credit applications.
6. a. No homestead rebate or credit shall be allowed pursuant to this act except upon annual application therefor, in any manner, upon any form, and in any format, whether in writing or otherwise, as shall be prescribed by the director. The director may require a claimant for a homestead rebate or credit to attach to the homestead rebate or credit application a copy of the appropriate property tax bill or proof of rent paid for the prior tax year. The director may require such other verification of eligibility for a homestead rebate or credit as the director may deem necessary. The director may require that the application for a homestead rebate for a unit of residential rental property authorized pursuant to section 4 of P.L.1990, c.61 (C.54:4-8.60) shall be submitted (1) as part of the claimant's gross income tax return filed pursuant to the "New Jersey Gross Income Tax Act," N.J.S.54A:1-1 et seq., or, (2) on any other form, in any manner or format and at any time and prior to any date as the director shall prescribe if (a) the claimant is not required to file a gross income tax return or (b) the claimant has filed an application for extension of time to file the claimant's gross income tax return. The director may require that the application for a homestead rebate or credit authorized pursuant to section 3 of P.L.1990, c.61 (C.54:4-8.59) shall be submitted (1) as part of the applicant's gross income tax return filed pursuant to the "New Jersey Gross Income Tax Act," N.J.S.54A:1-1 et seq., or (2) on any other form, in any other format and at any time and prior to any date as the director shall prescribe. The director shall, for good cause shown, extend the time of any applicant to file a claim for a homestead rebate or credit for a reasonable period, and in such case, the application shall be processed and payment of a homestead rebate or credit made in accordance with the procedures established in the case of applications timely filed, except the date for payment of the rebate or credit may be delayed for a reasonable period. If an applicant or an applicant's spouse has filed an application for an extension of time to file a gross income tax return, the date by which the applicant shall file the homestead rebate or credit application may, in the discretion of the director, be extended for a reasonable period, and the date for the payment of the rebate or credit may be delayed for a reasonable period. The director may require sworn applications. In the event that the director waives the requirement of sworn applications, all declarations by claimants shall be considered as if made under oath and claimants, as to false declarations, shall be subject to the penalties as provided by law for perjury.
For the purposes of this subsection, in order to establish good cause to extend the time of any applicant to file a claim for a homestead rebate or credit the applicant shall provide to the director either medical evidence, such as a doctor's certification, that the claimant was unable to file the claim by the date prescribed by the director because of illness or hospitalization, or evidence that the applicant attempted to file a timely application. Except as may be established by medical evidence of inability to file a claim, good cause shall not be established due to a claimant not having received an application from the director.
b. Upon approval of homestead rebate or credit applications by the director, the director shall prepare lists of individuals entitled to a rebate or credit, together with the respective amounts due each claimant and shall forward such lists to the State Treasurer, the Director of the Division of Budget and Accounting and any other officials as the director deems appropriate on or before the earliest of such date or dates as may be convenient for the director to compile such lists. The director may inspect all records in the offices of the tax collector and tax assessor of a municipality with respect to applications, claims and allowances for homestead rebates or credits.
c. If a homestead rebate application contains a claim for a rebate or credit that is incorrectly determined by the claimant or is based upon incorrect or insufficient information from which the director is to approve the claim, the director may determine the eligibility of the claimant for a homestead rebate or credit and the correct amount of a homestead rebate or credit to be paid to that claimant from such other information as may be available to the director. In addition, the director may adjust the amount of any homestead rebate or credit to which a claimant may be entitled by any part of the amount of any previous homestead rebate or credit erroneously claimed by and paid to that claimant.
d. In the case of a claimant for a homestead rebate whose homestead is a unit in a cooperative, mutual housing corporation or continuing care retirement community, the director may provide that the application shall include the name and address of the location of the property and the amount of real property taxes attributed to the cooperative, mutual housing residential unit or continuing care retirement community residential unit, as shall be indicated in an official notice which shall be furnished by the cooperative, mutual housing corporation or continuing care retirement community for the same year.
e. A homestead rebate or credit shall be allowed pursuant to this act for a claimant whose ownership of an interest in a homestead is satisfied by the holding of the beneficial interest if legal title thereto or share therein is held by another for the benefit of the claimant.
f. All provisions of this section shall apply to NJ SAVER rebate applications filed for and paid as homestead rebates for tax year 2003.
g. The director may, in writing, require the owner of residential rental property upon which property tax is not assessed, and the owner's agents and representatives, to provide the names of residents and tenants on the residential rental property and such other information, in such form, as the director deems reasonable to ensure that no claimant claiming a unit of that residential rental property as a homestead under this act receives a homestead rebate for which the claimant is not eligible. Any individual or entity failing to provide the required information within 60 days of the written request of the director shall be liable, in the discretion of the director, to a penalty of up to $500 for each month that the required information is not provided, unless it is shown that such failure is due to reasonable cause and not to willful neglect.
L.1990, c.61, s.6; amended 1999, c.63, s.8; 2004, c.40, s.7; 2007, c.62, s.24.
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