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Remote Work CA/WA

I switched jobs and the new company is headquartered in California. I am working remote from the state of Washington (no state income tax).  I do not need to be in CA to perform my work. Would I qualify for refunds of the CA taxes I am paying?  How do I file for one?

2 Replies
Level 15

Remote Work CA/WA

If you are a resident of Washington and your remote work is entirely done from a Washington location, your W2 income from that work is not subject to CA taxation.  If that's your situation no CA taxes should be withheld from your pay.


CA taxes non-residents only on CA-source income.  W-2 earnings are "sourced" where the work is actually performed.  In other words, CA taxes non-residents only on earnings from work actually (physically) done within the state of California.


Talk to your payroll department.


To obtain a refund of the incorrectly withheld CA taxes, at year's end file a non-resident CA tax return and allocate zero income to California.



**Answers are correct to the best of my ability but do not constitute tax or legal advice.
Level 15

Remote Work CA/WA

The above answer applies to regular W-2 employees.  If you are a contract employee, receiving a form 1099-NEC, instead of a W-2, the answer is different.   Due to a 2019 court ruling in CA, if you are a sole proprietor and you provide services to a client located in CA, that income is taxable by CA - even if you never set foot in California.  


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