DC and New Jersey Join Mississippi in Disregarding Coronavirus-Caused Remote Work for Tax Purposes
As part of our open letter to state tax administrators urging relief of undue tax administration burdens in light of COVID-19, we urged the disregarding of remote work for tax purposes. The public health necessity for businesses to close central operations and direct employees to work from home should not be used as an “opportunity” to create nexus for affected businesses and increase their filing, withholding or payment obligations.
Mississippi’s Department of Revenue responded to us very quickly, agreeing with us on that point: “Mississippi will not use any changes in the employees temporary work locations due to the pandemic to impose nexus or alter apportionment of income for any business while temporary telework requirements are in place.”
New Jersey’s Division of Taxation also quickly issued a similar statement: “In the event that employees are working from home solely as a result of closures due to the coronavirus outbreak and/or the employer’s social distancing policy, no threshold will be considered to have been met.” (Our colleagues discuss New Jersey’s announcement in more detail here.)
On April 10, the District of Columbia’s Office of Tax & Revenue issued a statement as well: “The Office of Tax and Revenue will not seek to impose corporation franchise tax or unincorporated business franchise tax nexus solely on the basis of employees or property used to allow employees to work from home (e.g., computers, computer equipment, or similar property) temporarily located in the District during the period of the declared public emergency and public health emergency, including any further extensions by the Mayor.”
If this is an important issue for your business and you have not yet seen guidance from a particular state, please contact the authors.