Tax Relief for Widows & Widowers

There are two tax relief programs available to Widows & Widowers, Circuit Breaker Tax Relief and the County Low Income Tax Relief. A Widow or Widower who has not yet remarried may qualify for and receive tax relief from both programs in the same year.

The Deadline for filing an application for tax relief is September 1st.

Circuit Breaker Tax Relief

Program QualificationsClick on heading for answer.
The purpose of the Circuit Breaker program is to provide general property tax relief to certain poor taxpayers who have household incomes below statutorily mandated levels and who own their place of residence. (Renters may also qualify. See Renter’s Credit below.) Any person providing their own financial support who is 66 years of age in the year of application, with a household income as identified by the legislation each year, may qualify for the program.

Claimants must meet the following requirements:
  1. 66 years of age in the year of application.
  2. File an application by the deadline of September 1st or the next business day if the 1st falls on a Saturday or Sunday.
  3. The claimant owned the property as of January 1 of the year the exemption is claimed. See Renter’s Credit below for information on Circuit Breaker for a claimant who rents their residence.
  4. Total household income cannot exceed the amount provided by legislation each year. That amount is $34,167 for 2019. Household income includes all individuals living in the residence who are over the age of 18, earning income and not a renter.
  5. A permanent resident of the state of Utah, residing in the state for the entire calendar year. Provide proof of established residency in the State of Utah. Absence from the residence due to vacation, confinement to a hospital, or other similar temporary situation is not to be deducted from the residency requirement.
  6. Providing their own financial support. (Is not claimed as a personal exemption on someone else’s income tax return.)
  7. Provide the following documentation:
    1. Most recent Tax returns, 1099, W-2 forms and/or any other documents to verify the income received for the previous calendar year for which the claimant is requesting the tax relief.
    2. In the event that part of the residence is rented, evidence that a bona fide rental relationship exists. Otherwise the tenant(s) will be considered household members for income purposes. Evidence will be either:
      • Rental agreement and rent receipts, or
      • An affidavit signed by the applicant and renter(s).
  8. May claim an abatement or deferral on only one residence. Mobile homes may be eligible for the abatement.
  9. If the claimant is married, and the property is jointly owned and occupied, signatures of both spouses are required if they seek a deferral or abatement on the residence.
  10. Property owned as Tenants in Common will receive an abatement only on the percentage of the property owned by the qualifying individual.

What Property is Eligible?Click on heading for answer.
The abatement will apply to the claimant's primary residence, which includes their home and up to the first acre of land. If a claimant's home is located on a parcel of ground that is larger than one acre in size, the abatement will only provide tax relief to the portion of taxes attributed to the first acre.

A primary residence is defined by the State of Utah as the principal place where one actually lives as distinguished from a place of temporary sojourn. Determining evidence of a primary residence includes voting record, length of continuous residency, and vehicle, income tax and driver license addresses of record. Condominiums used in rental pools and transient residential use is not considered primary residential. [Section 59-2-102 and R884-24P-52.]

How Much is the Abatement?Click to expand.
The amount of the exemption will be up to the maximum amount allowed by legislation for the year, plus an additional credit equal to the tax on 20% of the fair market value of the residence.

Circuit Breaker Amounts for 2019 - Based on Total Household Income
Abatement Amount
Minimum Income
Maximum Income
$1,043 $0 $11,616
$914 $11,617 $15,490
$788 $15,491 $19,361
$598 $19,362 $23,233
$472 $23,234 $27,108
$283 $27,108 $30,750
$155 $30,750 $34,167
Circuit Breaker 20% Additional Credit
Eligible Market Value x 20% x Your Tax Rate = Abatement Amount

Renter's CreditClick to Expand

The Renter's Credit aspect of the Circuit Breaker program is managed entirely by the Utah State Tax Commission. An application for the renter's credit must be filed with the Utah State Tax Commission by December 31 each year. Please contact the Utah State Tax Commission for additional information.

County Low Income Tax Relief

Program QualificationsClick to Expand
The purpose of this program is to provide tax relief to claimants who have income below statutorily mandated levels and who own their residence. Any person providing their own financial support, regardless of age, with a household income as identified by legislation each year, may qualify for the program.

Claimants must meet the following requirements:
  1. File an application by the deadline of September 1st or the next business day if the 1st falls on a Saturday or Sunday.
  2. The claimant owned the property as of January 1 of the year the exemption is claimed.
  3. Total household income cannot exceed the amount provided by legislation each year. That amount is $34,167 for 2019. Household income includes all individuals living in the residence who are over the age of 18, earning income and not a renter.
  4. The claimant must live in their residence at least 10 months of the year. Provide proof of established residency in the State of Utah. Absence from the residence due to vacation, confinement to a hospital, or other similar temporary situation is not to be deducted from the residency requirement.
  5. Providing their own financial support. (Is not claimed as a personal exemption on someone else’s income tax return.)
  6. Provide the following documentation:
    1. Most recent Tax returns, 1099, W-2 forms and/or any other documents to verify the income received for the previous calendar year for which the claimant is requesting the tax relief.
    2. In the event that part of the residence is rented, evidence that a bona fide rental relationship exists. Otherwise the tenant(s) will be considered household members for income purposes. Evidence will be either:
      • Rental agreement and rent receipts, or
      • An affidavit signed by the applicant and renter(s).
    3. Current statements showing balances of all savings, money market, certificate of deposit (CD), stocks, or similar liquid or semi-liquid accounts. Current grand total of these accounts must not exceed a total of $5,000 (allowed as a burial allowance). The accrued value of insurance policies or legally defined retirement accounts such as a 401k or IRA is not included in the total.
  7. Claimant must not own other significant real property besides the primary residence.
  8. May claim an abatement or deferral on only one residence. Mobile homes may be eligible for the abatement.
  9. If the claimant is married, and the property is jointly owned and occupied, signatures of both spouses are required if they seek a deferral or abatement on the residence.
  10. Property owned as Tenants in Common will receive an abatement only on the percentage of the property owned by the qualifying individual.

What Property is Eligible?Click on heading for answer.
The abatement will apply to the claimant's primary residence, which includes their home and up to the first acre of land. If a claimant's home is located on a parcel of ground that is larger than one acre in size, the abatement will only provide tax relief to the portion of taxes attributed to the first acre.

A primary residence is defined by the State of Utah as the principal place where one actually lives as distinguished from a place of temporary sojourn. Determining evidence of a primary residence includes voting record, length of continuous residency, and vehicle, income tax and driver license addresses of record. Condominiums used in rental pools and transient residential use is not considered primary residential. [Section 59-2-102 and R884-24P-52.]

How Much is the Abatement?Click to Expand
The amount of the exemption will be 50% of the taxes due, up to the maximum amount allowed by legislature for the year ($1,015 for 2019).