Once you know you are eligible for both the federal EITC and the NJEITC, then you're on your way to putting money back in your pocket!
Claiming the NJEITC is easy.
Step 1: You must apply for and claim a federal EITC. The NJEITC is a percentage of the federal EITC, so you need the amount of your federal EITC first.
Step 2: Once you have your federal EITC amount, you must file a New Jersey Resident Income Tax Return (Form NJ-1040) to claim the NJEITC on line 57. Even if your income is equal to or below the New Jersey filing threshold amount, you still need to file the return to show your income for the year and claim the credit. You cannot claim this credit on any other form.
Remember, you cannot claim an NJEITC if your filing status is Married, Filing Separately.
Civil Union Couples: If you are filing a joint New Jersey return and one or both of you are eligible and file for a federal EITC, you also might be able to receive the NJEITC.
If you did not file a joint federal return, prepare a federal return as if you were married, filing jointly, and then calculate the amount of the federal EITC you would have been eligible to receive. Use that amount to calculate your New Jersey credit.
If you need help we are here! Visit any one of our Regional Information Centers for help or contact us by phone. There are also additional free preparation services for eligible EITC taxpayers.