Real Estate Tax Credit
Submitted by John Graham

While the NH legislature recently passed several bills of interest to veterans, one is of particular importance.  This is SB 45, for which your president and BOD lobbied.  This bill allows towns and cities to adopt optional veterans' property tax credit in any amount from $51 to $500, and it allows towns and cities to adopt an optional property tax credit for service-connected total disability in an amount from $701 up to $2,000.

Currently the law provides that “the standard veterans' tax credit shall be $50”, with the optional tax credit being capped at $100.   SB 45 will allow cities and towns to increase the veterans tax credit to a maximum of $500.   However, the law is not directive, and it is up to each municipality to enact regulations establishing a higher tax credit.  This means it is up to you to work on your local officials to either approve the increase or to put the question on the warrant for the town meeting.

To be eligible for either the standard or optional veterans tax credit you must be a resident of the state and have served not less than 90 days in the armed forces of the United States in any qualifying war or armed conflict or be the spouse or surviving spouse of such resident.

While earlier conflicts are listed in the law, essentially you must have served during the following periods to receive the credit:

• “World War II" between December 7, 1941 and December 31, 1946; 
• "Korean Conflict" between June 25, 1950 and January 31, 1955; 
• "Vietnam Conflict" between December 22, 1961 and May 7, 1975; 
• "Vietnam Conflict" between July 1, 1958 and December 22, 1961, if the resident earned the Vietnam service medal or the armed forces expeditionary medal; or 
• Any other war or armed conflict that has occurred since May 8, 1975, and in which the resident earned an armed forces expeditionary medal or theater of operations service medal.

In a similar manner SB 45 raises the ceiling on the service connected disability tax credit to a maximum of $2,000.  The old ceiling for the optional portion of this credit was $1,400.  Again, it is not directive, and you will have to work to get the ceiling raised.

The following is the criteria for this tax credit.   “Any person who has been honorably discharged or an officer honorably separated from the military service of the United States and who has total and permanent service-connected disability, or who is a double amputee or paraplegic because of service-connected injury, or the surviving spouse of such a person, shall receive a standard yearly tax credit in the amount of $700 of property taxes on the person's residential property.”



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