The Chilling Realities of the Telecommuting Tax: Adapting Twentieth Century Policies for Twenty-First Century Technologies

Michael Kraich

Abstract


The U.S. Tax Code has become so confusing and complex that tax professionals have gone from being a luxury to a necessity. Compound this complexity with the added layer of intricacy found at the state level and this already complex system becomes a labyrinth. While society has favored technological advances, the tax system has not. In particular, telecommuters have found themselves in a sort of limbo – working from home while sometimes simultaneously “working” at their employer’s location. This Note focuses on how this hypothetical of the 1980’s is today a reality, and how the courts of select states have approached this new paradigm. Specifically, this Note elaborates on the positions taken by New York and New Jersey, both major commuting states who have issued relating decisions, as well as what these decisions mean for residents of neighboring states like Connecticut and Pennsylvania. Finally, this Note advocates for uniformity between states, praises existing state policies such as Pennsylvania and New Jersey's, among others, and hopes to revive proposed unifying legislation in light of recent cases.


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5195/tlp.2015.167

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