Tax Returns New Tax Rules and Options for New York State Taxpayers

New York State taxpayers can expect to find some new items on their 2013 state tax return, several of which will apply for future years. The following are noteworthy highlights from the New York State Department of Taxation Form IT-201, Full-Year Resident Income Tax Return, and Form IT-203, Nonresident and Part-Year Resident Tax Return.

File New York State Tax Return Online

In the "What's New for 2013" section of the New York State tax instruction booklet, there is an "E-File for Free" bullet point. This option will allow most New York State taxpayers to file their income tax returns electronically via the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance website, free of charge. This system is similar to the NJ Web File system, which affords New Jersey taxpayers with the ability to file their state tax return online efficiently and without the need for costly, specialized software.

Same-Sex Married Couples Filing Instructions

As a result of the Marriage Equality Act of 2011, all legally recognized marriages are treated equally under New York State law. The instructions in Form IT-201explaint that, as a result of the Supreme Court's decision in United States v. Windsor and Internal Revenue Service ("IRS") Revenue Ruling 2013-17, New York State will recognize same sex marriages for tax purposes provided that the marriage was legally recognized in the jurisdiction within which it was performed.

New York State AGI Computation

The current New York State tax rates appear to remain the same but the state standard tax deduction and tax rate schedules have been adjusted for inflation and cost of living. In addition, the instructions state that taxpayers with an Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) greater than $102,900 will require additional tax computations. Seven different worksheets are provided which apply to single and joint filers with different high income levels.

Reinstatement of the Pease Limitation

The Pease limitation (named after Ohio Representative Donald J. Pease) is a limitation on itemized deductions. Its reinstatement reflects an attempt to raise revenue for the government by reducing or eliminating the itemized deduction for high income taxpayers.

Energy Saving Tax Credit

There is a new credit for "alternative fuels and electric vehicle recharging property." This will probably affect a minority of taxpayers although its worth noting given the increased attention given to green energy efforts.

Form to Pay Tax Balance by Personal Check

Taxpayers with a balance due to the state and who plan to pay via personal check must complete Form IT-201-V, Payment Voucher for Income Tax Returns. All information is required according to the form's instructions, which includes a box to enter a working e-mail address.

Each year changes are made to federal and state tax rules and requirements. While many will remain the same, some changes are noteworthy and can make a significant difference with regard to income tax liability. Taxpayers who expect to file a more complex return or who expect to have a high balance due are probably well served by discussing their specific situations with a tax specialist or an experienced accountant.
  1. New York
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Michael Wechsler
Michael M. Wechsler is an experienced attorney, founder of, A. Research Scholar at Columbia Business School and of-counsel to Kaplan, Williams & Graffeo, LLC. He was also an SVP and chief Internet strategist at and legal consultant at Kroll Ontrack, a leading service e-discovery and computer forensics service provider.


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