California Residency: Intent Not Enough to Change a Taxpayer’s Residence

For the first time in over 20 years, the California Court of Appeal has issued a published decision interpreting the California residency provisions of Revenue and Taxation Code section 17014. In Homer E. Nobel et al. v. Franchise Tax Board, the court addressed whether the taxpayers were residents of California for personal income tax purposes. Despite the taxpayers’ clear intent to change their domicile and residence to Colorado, the court held the taxpayers were still California residents. Before addressing the Court of Appeal’s decision in Nobel, a brief review of California’s residency law is instructive.

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