IRS Postones Tax Deadline for Hurricane Harvey Victims

IRS Postones Tax Deadline for Hurricane Harvey Victims

The nightmare from Hurricane Harvey will still be felt for days, weeks, or even months, to come. With anywhere from 5-15 inches of rain expected to fall in the next few days, people are scrambling to get to safety. The rescue attempts have been heroic, to say the least. However, nine have perished in the storm with the death toll continuing to rise.

18 Counties Named In Tax Extension

To help victims in the area, the IRS is granting an extension of individual and business tax returns. Of course, everyone that is affected by the flood isn’t worried about their taxes at a time like this. However, they will be grateful for the break when the rebuilding process begins. So far, the IRS has granted this late filing to 18 counties, but look for the numbers to increase as the storm rages. Those living in Wharton, Victoria, San Patricio, Refugio, Nueces, Matagorda, Liberty, Kleberg, Jackson, Harris, Goliad, Galveston, Fort Bend, Chambers, Calhoun, Brazoria, Bee, and Aransas can take advantage of this offer.

More Areas May Be Added As The Storm Continues

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) continues to assess the storm’s damages in the area. Consequently, the storm is heading toward Louisiana, and it’s not done yet. Louisiana could also receive this special tax relief should the storm hit the area as anticipated. On the wake of the 12th year anniversary of Katrina, New Orleans is not ready for another blast from Mother Nature. Thankfully, the IRS is on their side. They will continue to monitor the situation and add relief to areas as needed.

John Koskinen, the IRS Commissioner, was quick to announce that the agency wanted to help by giving this method of relief. An extended deadline means that taxpayers who asked for an extension last spring until October of this year will have an additional five months to complete their paperwork. Any tax payments, due by April 18th, will not be covered by this extension. The nonpayment penalties and interest continue to mount as these payments are already past due.

Important Dates To Remember

Businesses will also receive relief on the January 31st extension. Their extension would be due mid-September. However, the extra filing time only covers the last two estimated tax payments of 2017, and these are the payments that are due September 14 and January 16 of 2018. Starting on August 23rd, the IRS has postponed many business tax filings and payment deadlines as this is the date that Harvey made landfall in Texas. This will include the looming October 31st deadline for excise and payroll tax returns too. If payroll deposits are made by September 7, 2017, then the IRS will waive any late-deposit penalties on the federal payroll and excise taxes.

Tax Relief Is Open To Workers From Other Areas Too

Taxpayers whose address are in the disaster area can receive automatic filing and penalty relief. These taxpayers needn’t contact the IRS to receive this benefit as the computer will automatically apply it by address. Anyone who is eligible for the special relief, but receives a notice from the IRS about their late filing, should call 1-866-562-5227. This relief will also cover those living outside the area. Anyone who is part of a philanthropic or government organization, helping in the rescue and rebuilding efforts is eligible for these extensions.