# Divide by zero on 540NR form (due to tax treaty)

I am filling a 540NR form for 2014, for California. Line 33 says:

"CA Standard Deduction Percentage Divide line 32 by line 17. If more than 1, enter 1.0000"

Line 32 is the CA adjusted gross income, and is \$8,521. Line 17 is equal in my case to line 13 and is the federal adjusted gross income. For me, it's \$0. I get it from my 1040NR-EZ form, and it is because all of my income is under "Total income exempt by a treaty from page 2, Item J(1)(e)" (line 6 in 1040NR-EZ for 2014).

Obviously I have a mathematical problem since I can't divide \$8,521 by 0. What should I write?

Also, does that mean there is a conceptual problem with submitting this form? I have state taxes reduced in 2014 and I believe I should get a refund.

• Write in `Floating point exception (core dumped)` and leave the rest of the form blank 8-) Commented Oct 28, 2016 at 16:43
• If possible, I would probably leave that field blank (don't even write 0) and write in a comment field "line 17 is \$0" or something like that. Or call (in your case) the IRS and ask.
– user
Commented Oct 28, 2016 at 17:10
• You are using the 540NR Short Form; I think you must use the 540NR Long Form instead, because you have adjustments to income (you need to add back the income exempted by a tax treaty since California doesn't recognize tax treaties) that are not supported by the Short Form. Commented Oct 28, 2016 at 19:54
• Also, why are you using 540NR at all? Did you only live part of the year in California? If you lived the whole year in California, then you are a California resident and should just use 540. Commented Oct 28, 2016 at 19:55
• Another thing is that your income level, about \$8521, is so low that you don't have to file a California tax return. Check the "Do I Have To File?" section at the beginning of the form tax booklet, to see the threshold that applies to you. But your income level seems to be below the threshold in pretty much every case. So unless you have California withheld tax that you want to get back, you probably don't have to file. Commented Oct 28, 2016 at 19:57