The Latest Changes to California Tax Law for Individuals

Throughout the year, California legislators find ways to tweak the state tax code and add new laws. Some of these laws are designed to conform, or not, with federal tax laws, others are to bring operations up to date, and yet others are brand new laws that cover previously unaddressed issues. Following are the latest changes to California tax law:

  • Registered domestic partners in California are now required to file using married/RDP filing jointly or married status. No more filing as a single status. Partners who joined in a legal same sex union in another state but relocated to California must also use the correct married/RDP status on their returns.
  • California does not offer a discharge on indebtedness if a home went into foreclosure or short sale. Federal law forgives the income "gained" by the loss of the house through these means, but California does not. If a home was lost after January 1, 2013, taxes must be paid.
  • Deductions for California medical expenses still have a threshold of 7.5 percent of federal adjusted gross income, whereas federal law raised it to 10 percent.
  • Three new funds are available for voluntary contributions: Protect Our Coast and Oceans Fund, Keep Arts in School Fund and American Red Cross, California Chapters Fund.

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