Homeowners experiencing extenuating circumstances may be eligible the Extenuating Circumstances Income-Based (ECI) plan.
You're eligible for the plan if:
- You have owned a 1-, 2-, or 3-family home or a condominium unit for at least one year
- You have lived on the property for at least one year
- The combined income of all owners is $86,400 or less (federal adjusted gross income)
- You meet the definition of having extenuating circumstances
Extenuating circumstances involves the loss of income due to death, serious illness, or unemployment of owner or immediate family member, or enrollment in DEP’s Water Debt Assistance Program. You must submit documentation to prove your extenuating circumstance, such as a death certificate, income tax return, or medical document.
The term of the plan is for a minimum of one year, but it may be extended if situation persists.
After your plan expires, you must:
- Pay current charges in full and
- Pay delinquent taxes in full or enter into a standard DOF payment agreement within six months
Amount of Deferred Payments
While you are on the plan, your monthly or quarterly payments for delinquent and projected taxes and charges due will be limited to 2%, 4%, 6%, or 8% of your adjusted gross income (AGI).
You should choose a payment percentage that best fits your budget. The more tax payments that are deferred, the higher the amount you will eventually have to repay.
To estimate the amount of each installment payment on the plan, use the ECI Plan Calculator. After you finish calculating the payments, submit and print the payment plan calculator form to use in your application.
You can’t defer payment of:
- More than 25% of your equity in a tax class 1 (one-, two-, or three-unit residential) property or 50% of equity for condominiums
- Payments that are required because of any lien sold prior to making your application
- Water or sewer bills
The total amount of deferred tax payments is capped when it equals or exceeds 25% of your equity in a tax class 1 (one-, two-, or three-unit residential) property or 50% of equity for condominiums.
A property's equity is the market value of the home minus any mortgages, liens, and other liabilities.
The payment of additional taxes and charges can't be deferred if the cap is reached. You may request adjustment of the deferral cap based on increase in market property value.