Elderly Homeowner/Renter Credit (Circuit Breaker)





Variations in Receipt of Benefit

Benefit Varies with Income

Minimum Tax Amount Must be Paid

Benefit Type

Circuit Breaker


The program provides a refundable credit for qualifying individuals for a portion of their property taxes or rent paid in relation to their income. Property taxes are assumed to be 15% of rent payments. Threshold payments of taxes are determined by 12 brackets, ranging from 0% for those with income below $2,000, to 5% for those with income $12,000 and over. For incomes below $35,000, the entire credit of taxes in excess of the threshold is permitted. The percentage of credit in excess of the threshold is reduced in 10% increments, starting at 40% for those with income between $35,00 and $37,500. No credit is available for those with income $45,000 or more. In the case of a claimant who rents the homestead for which a claim is made, the credit is the amount of rent-equivalent tax paid less the deduction (with the same income thresholds above). The maximum credit granted may not exceed $1,000.

How is Benefit Disbursed

Credit to the income tax bill

Eligible Property Type


Characteristics of Eligible Property

Only residential property is eligible for this program. Up to one acre of property can be included.

Eligibility Criteria



Income Ceiling


Description of Eligibility Criteria

This program is for homeowners and renters age 62 and older during the claim period for which the benefit is sought. They must have lived in Montana for at least 9 months and at least 6 months as a owner or renter. The gross household income for all household members must be less than $45,000. Income is defined as gross household income which is all income received, taxable and nontaxable, by all individuals who live in your household. This includes, but is not limited to, the income of adult children and unrelated individuals living in the residence and includes the following forms of income: pension and annuity income, disability benefits (including SSI payments, veteran's disability and workers' compensation). A person is not disqualified as a claimant if the person changes residences during the claim period, provided that the person occupies one or more dwellings in Montana as an owner, renter, or lessee for at least 6 months during the claim period.

Local Option in Adoption of Program

Local government is unable to exercise an option

Local Option Regarding Program Features

No local option regarding program features

State Funding for Local Tax Loss

State reimburses all of the local government tax loss

Description of State Funding for Tax Loss

The state provides a refundable income tax credit.

Record ID



The application must be submitted by the date that the income tax is due. If they do not need to file taxes, the claim is due April 15th.


Mont. Code Ann. § 15-30-2337 ~ 15-30-2341 (in effect for 2021)
Montana Department of Revenue, Form 2 Individual Income Tax Return, includes Montana Elderly Homeowner/Renter Credit Application TY 2020 (2021)
[https://app.mt.gov/myrevenue/Endpoint/DownloadPdf?yearId=1043 Accessed 04/13/2021]
View Archived Source

Montana Department of Revenue, Montana Individual Income Tax Return
[https://app.mt.gov/myrevenue/Endpoint/Form/24 Accessed 03/27/2021]

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