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Expanded Instructions
  • Instruction Year: 2023

A person can be a resident of only one state at any given time. Usually, it is clear which state that is. Normally, it is the state in which one lives and works. Occasionally, however, the question of residency can be a little more difficult to answer. If a person moves during the year, or for some reason spends an extended period of time outside the state, the actual state of residence may not always be as obvious.

Intent of Individual

The issue of residency hinges mainly on the intent of the individual. That intent is often clear and easy to determine. If a person moves from one state to another with the intent of changing residence, that person will take certain actions. They will typically take obvious steps to eliminate ties and contacts with the former state, and establish similar ties and contacts with the new state. In some cases, however, the actions taken by the individual may create some confusion as to the actual intent.

Factors to Measure Intent

When a person's intent is not readily apparent, several factors are used as a guide to measure that intent. No single factor can be used. All the facts and circumstances of the case must be weighed in their totality to determine a person's intent and residency.

Some of the factors used in this analysis are listed below:

  • Are you registered to vote in Iowa?
  • Have you voted (in person or by absentee ballot) in an Iowa election?
  • Do you or any of your family attend Iowa schools?
  • Do you have an Iowa telephone listing and service?
  • Do you receive your mail in Iowa?
  • Do you have an Iowa driver's license?
  • Do you hold any business or professional licenses in Iowa?
  • Do you hold an Iowa hunting or fishing license?
  • Is your automobile registered in Iowa? Do you have Iowa license plates?
  • Are any boats or recreational or all-terrain vehicles registered in Iowa?
  • Do you own a home in Iowa?
  • Is your home larger than your home in any other state?
  • Do you claim homestead or military credits for property tax?
  • Do you keep your valuables, mementos, collections, jewelry, or prized personal possessions in Iowa?
  • Do you live in Iowa for more days of the tax year than in any other state?
  • Do you live in any other state for more days of the tax year than in Iowa?
  • Do you receive income from an Iowa source?
  • Do you receive services from doctors, dentists, attorneys, CPAs, or any other professionals located in Iowa?
  • Do you have an active membership in an Iowa church, club, professional or civic organization in Iowa, and participate as a result of the membership?
  • Do you claim a benefit on the federal income tax return based on an Iowa home being the principal place of business?
  • Do you have active checking or savings accounts or use of safe deposit boxes located in Iowa?
  • Do you have a location of employment in Iowa or active participation in a business within Iowa?
  • Is Iowa the state of residency in your Last Will and Testament?

Please keep in mind that no single factor will typically be sufficient to make a residency determination. When viewed as a whole, the answers to the above questions will generally give a good indication as to the individual's intent, and therefore, to the state of residence.

Residency Rules

For more details on the subject of residency, including several examples, please refer to Iowa Administrative Code rule 701-300.17.

Servicemembers and Their Spouses

Servicemembers and their spouses should reference Iowa Tax Responsibilities of Servicemember and their Spouses for additional information.