Senate President Stephen Sweeney
Deputy Speaker John Burzichelli
Assemblyman Adam Taliaferro – Stacey Barchenger, Trenton Bureau

New Jersey voters gave a resounding “yes” to expand property tax benefits for veterans in last week’s election.

Now what?

The ballot question, which passed with 76% of the vote, makes veterans eligible for a $250 property tax deduction regardless of whether they served during a time of war or peace.

It also expands a property tax exemption to include totally disabled veterans regardless of when or where they served.

Here’s what you need to know about who qualifies under the law, how to get the benefits, and what state officials say about when you’ll see a drop in your tax bill.

What changed?

Previously, only veterans who served during times of war were eligible for the deduction and exemption.

But voters last week overwhelmingly said they think active duty veterans who served during peacetime should also get the property tax benefits.

Who is eligible?

The deduction and exemption are for honorably discharged veterans with active duty service in periods of war or peacetime.

If an eligible veteran has died, their surviving spouse can collect the tax relief benefits.

Veterans must own their homes to qualify. The 100% property tax exemption for disabled veterans is only applicable to taxes paid on a primary residence.

What do I need to do?

Veterans or surviving spouses need to apply at their municipal tax office.

They need to fill out an application form and provide a copy of their DD214 discharge paperwork.

Disabled veterans seeking the 100% exemption need to show Department of Veterans Affairs verification of 100% permanent and total disability, and local rules may require you to bring documents like proof of property ownership or others.

It’s probably a good idea to call your municipal government office to see what paperwork you need, and if their hours or application procedures have been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

The application forms currently ask veterans to identify what period of war they served in, however, that is no longer required because of the constitutional amendment passed by voters.

Updated forms will be available by Dec. 1, but residents who want to apply sooner can just cross out the wartime service section and use the old forms, according to the New Jersey Department of the Treasury.

Veterans eligible for the $250 deduction should fill out form VSS. Disabled veterans eligible for the total exemption should fill out form DVSSE.

Find the forms and more information for veterans online at

Do I apply every year?

No, just apply once, the treasury department said.

But according to state law, you must notify the municipal tax office if something changes your eligibility, like if you move.

And local officials can ask questions to make sure you continue to qualify for tax relief programs.

When will I get benefits?

The amendment is effective on Dec. 4, according to the treasury department, but it’s not yet clear when you’ll see the deduction on your quarterly bill or the exemption.

A spokeswoman for the Department of Community Affairs, which oversees local government issues like property tax levies, said it was “too soon” to comment on the expanded benefits.

How many people will this help?

About 172,000 veterans claimed the benefits in the 2019 tax year, and an estimated 57,000 more are now eligible because of the amendment.

District Offices

Gloucester County

Kingsway Commons
935 Kings Highway, Suite 400
West Deptford, NJ 08086
Phone: (856) 251-9801
Fax: (856) 251-9752

Salem/Cumberland Counties

The Finlaw Building
199 East Broadway, Suite G
Salem, NJ 08079
Phone: (856) 339-0808 or
             (856) 455-1011
Fax: (856) 339-9626