Accountants say leaving New Jersey can prevent cash, a survey discovered

Wildwood Beach, New Jersey, on the Jersey Shore on May 27, 2021.

Spencer Platt | Getty Images

Certified accountants have a message for New Jersey clients: It’s time to move to a more affordable state.

That’s according to a recent survey by the New Jersey Society of CPAs, which found that 70% of the professionals surveyed who have clients in the state advised them to move because of the high cost of living.

Meanwhile, 53% of accountants surveyed said they asked business customers in the Garden State to move because of the high cost of doing business.

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The reason CPAs push their clients to move is because of their fiduciary duty to provide good advice, said Ralph Thomas, CEO and Executive Director at NJCPA.

There’s another reason they’re having these conversations: taxes.

“The tax structure here is one of the highest, if not the highest, in the country, and that is certainly a negative issue for individuals and businesses,” said Thomas.

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High property taxes and corporate tax rates were cited as major concerns among CPAs surveyed.

The main concerns of companies include the lack of qualified personnel, regulatory requirements and the domestic economic situation.

NJCPA is providing data and information to encourage the state to streamline its government.

The organization has done work to address gas and inheritance taxes. One of the current priorities on the agenda, Thomas says, is inheritance tax, which could be tightened to be fairer.

The survey found that CPAs are seeing more high-income customers leaving the state. About 60% said they saw more high-income customers than non-New Jersey residents. At the same time, around 70% of CPAs said they saw a decrease in the number of high-income customers with government residents.

Popular places to move are states where the cost of living and taxes are cheaper, Thomas said, such as Delaware, Pennsylvania, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas.

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Auditors were more pessimistic about the economic outlook for New Jersey for the remainder of 2021 compared to the US as a whole

The poll found that 37% said New Jersey will do worse for the rest of the year, versus 30% who said the same for the US. 35% said economic conditions in New Jersey will improve during the remainder of 2021, up from 43%. who said the same for the usa

NJCPA’s survey, sponsored by Provident Bank, was conducted in May and included 440 certified accountants.

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