On April 29, 2021, the Division of Tax Appeals issued its decision In the Matter of the Petition of Boniface, DTA No. 829018, holding that the Taxpayers had failed to establish that they had changed their domicile from New York to Florida, notwithstanding many factors establishing a substantial Florida connection. These factors included purchasing a home in Florida that was larger than the one owned in New York, obtaining Florida drivers licenses and using Florida medical care providers. The tax auditor obtained the taxpayers’ cellular phone statements and credit card statements to try to determine their New York tax days, Florida tax days and day counts in other jurisdictions. A disagreement existed between the auditors ultimate day count determinations and the taxpayers calendar. The tribunal ultimately was required to make a determination as to the taxpayers’ tax day counts. In the end the tribunal determined that even though the taxpayers did not exceed the 183 day New York limit (and become statutory residents), the taxpayers spent more days in New York and Florida and consequently, this was strong evidence that the taxpayers had not changed their domicile to Florida.
As a consequence of this failure, the Taxpayers remained subject to New York income tax on all of their income, regardless of source for the time periods at issue.
This case illustrates the importance of both maintaining an accurate day count and one that is higher in the favorable state than the unfavorable state. For information on using the Domicile365 app to track your day counts, click here.