I leased a Mazda through Chase Bank in July 2014, living in NJ. I moved to Florida in January 2016. My payment increased from $241. to $258. I was told it was due to tax. Can you explain that to me? I don't trust them and feel as though I should be refunded for the time I spent in Florida. (15 months) Thank you.
Property Leased in New Jersey Transferred Out of State
If a lessee transfers property leased in New Jersey out of State, and the lessee paid New Jersey all the Sales Tax at the beginning of the lease, the lessee is eligible for a refund of tax for the period of time that the property is not located in the State.
For example, if you have a three year lease and you move it out of NJ after one year, you are eligible for a refund of 2/3rds of the upfront taxes paid by you to the state of NJ.
To claim a refund, you'll likely need to be able to show the upfront tax payment as a line item that you paid in full as part of your downpayment or "amount due at signing" on your lease agreement.
If it wasn't itemized, there is a possibility that your lessor provided a credit for the full tax amount, which they basically claw back in the form of a slightly higher monthly payment over the term of the lease. If they've done it that way then you won't be eligible for a refund since you haven't directly paid the taxes yourself, the lessor did. Technically they would be eligible to claim the refund for themselves at this point, but the amount is probably less than they care about and it's doubtful they would credit you back anyway.
You should start by asking the NJ division of taxation (contact info in the linked page) how you can apply for sales tax refunds. Hopefully they'll accept an itemized bill of sale (or the lease equivalent) and pay you back directly. Otherwise, you'll have to work with Chase Bank and see if they are able/willing to put a claim in on your behalf.
The higher amount you are now paying in FL is a result of taxes being applied to your monthly payment. Unfortunately there is no way to get out of that obligation.
I cannot speak to NJ, but auto leases in FL have their sales tax paid monthly. It seems like you live in a county where the tax rate is about 7%.