On Sept. 14, 2011, Gov. Chris Christie signed a law that exempts home sales by individuals, estates and trusts from the state Bulk Sales Transfer Act (the "Act").  The 2007 Act was adopted to ensure that businesses satisfy their state tax obligations before selling assets. But, as written, it did not differentiate between business and non-business sellers.

The new amendment provides that the notification requirement "shall not apply to the sale, transfer or assignment of a simple dwelling house if the seller, transferrer or assignor is an 'individual,' 'estate,' or 'trust'."  A "simple dwelling house" is defined as any attached or detached one- or two-family residential structure, including a unit in a housing cooperative or horizontal property regime, or a condominium.  The amendment takes effect immediately and applies retroactively to transactions occurring on or after the date the Act went into effect.

Structures including more than two units, or those including two units plus commercial space remain subject to the notification requirement. Additionally, transactions in which the seller is a business entity, including a corporation or partnership, are still subject to the Act. The bill's first draft explicitly excluded limited liability companies from the Act's requirements but that language was not included in the final version.