Tax Filing Extensions For Some And Maybe For All

tax extension

Taxes Are Due April 15th. Maybe.

With the 2018 April 15th tax filing deadline just a month away there are those in Washington and other parts of the country hoping to have that deadline extended for all American taxpayers until the 20th of May. The two big reasons some are calling for the extension are, first, the historic 30-day government shutdown and secondly the confusion of the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

Alabama Disaster Areas Get Filing Extension Relief

In the meantime, while the powers-that-be determine whether or not the Taxpayer Extension Act will be passed or not, some Alabama taxpayers are getting an extension.

As it stands right now, according to the IRS, “Victims of the severe storms, tornadoes, and straight-line winds that took place on March 3, 2019 in Alabama may qualify for tax relief from the Internal Revenue Service. The President has declared that a major disaster occurred in the State of Alabama. Following the recent disaster declaration for individual assistance issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the IRS announced today that affected taxpayers in certain areas will receive tax relief. Individuals who reside or have a business in Lee County may qualify for tax relief.”

Individual taxpayers as well as businesses in the disaster area are entitled to the filing extension. As the IRS.gov site states, “The declaration permits the IRS to postpone certain deadlines for taxpayers who reside or have a business in the disaster area. For instance, certain deadlines falling on or after March 3, 2019 and before July 31, 2019, are granted additional time to file through July 31, 2019. This includes 2018 individual income tax returns and payments normally due on April 15, 2019. It also includes the quarterly estimated income tax payments due on April 15, 2019 and June 17, 2019. Eligible taxpayers will also have until July 31, 2019 to make 2018 IRA contributions.”

In addition, The IRS will waive the usual fees and expedite requests for copies of previously filed tax returns for affected taxpayers. Taxpayers should put the assigned Disaster Designation “Alabama, Severe Storms, Straight-line Winds and Tornadoes” in red ink at the top of Form 4506, Request for Copy of Tax Return, or Form 4506-T, Request for Transcript of Tax Return, as appropriate, and submit it to the IRS.

All Other Individual Taxpayers Are In A Wait-And-See Holding Pattern

The rest of the country is in a wait-and-see holding pattern so don’t stop working on your taxes until you know for sure. The Tax Extension Act could be passed or it could be passed over putting many in the position of requesting extensions.

If passed, The Taxpayer Extension Act would provide an extension of the tax return due date for five weeks, from April 15, 2019 to May 20, 2019, for individual income tax returns for 2018, to provide additional time equal to the government shutdown.

The problem with filing for extensions is that some issues are not solved simply with an extension. For example, if you’ve received a levy notice, they have a 21-day reply period. And, the clock was ticking on that time bomb all during the government shutdown. So that is an issue that cannot be resolved if you wanted to make a payment plan or rescind the levies.

If the Taxpayer Extension Act is passed, every taxpayer will have until May 20, 2019 to file income tax returns without penalty. Extension or no extension, if you are behind on filing and/or paying your taxes and need help unraveling your situation with the IRS give us a call.