The Internal Revenue Service announced that victims of Hurricane Florence will get tax relief in the form of extended deadlines to file and pay their taxes.
Residents and businesses in areas designated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as qualifying for assistance now have until January 31, 2019 to file and pay their taxes. Tax relief applies to tax filing and payment deadlines that occurred starting September 7, 2018, in parts of North Carolina. This includes quarterly estimated income tax payments due on September 17, 2018, and quarterly payroll and excise tax returns normally due on October 31, 2018.
The IRS also said that penalties on payroll and excise tax deposits due on or after September 7, 2018, and before September 24, 2018, will be abated as long as the deposits are made by September 24, 2018. (Note: Even though the IRS has extended some payroll tax filing deadlines, clients of Corporate Payroll Services will have their taxes filed and paid by their scheduled due date.)
The IRS extension also includes business taxpayers with a valid extension of time to file their 2017 calendar year partnership tax returns, due September 17, 2018, as well as others with valid extensions of time to file their returns until October 15, 2018.
Since (now tropical depression) Florence is a slow-moving system continuing to dump torrential rain across the Carolinas and other parts of the eastern United States, additional areas could be affected. As of today, Monday, September 17, 2018, these North Carolina counties qualify for relief:
Beaufort, Bladen, Brunswick, Carteret, Columbus, Craven, Cumberland, Duplin, Harnett, Lenoir, Jones, New Hanover, Onslow, Pamlico, Pender, Robeson, Sampson and Wayne counties.
Taxpayers should continue to check the IRS’ online disaster relief page for Florence, as well as FEMA’s Florence site for eligible localities.
How to claim tax relief
If you reside in one of the “Florence-eligible” areas, you don’t have to contact the IRS to get claim relief. The agency automatically provides filing and penalty relief to any taxpayer with an IRS address of record located in the disaster area.
However, if you receive a late filing or late payment penalty notice from the IRS that has an original or extended filing, payment or deposit due date falling within the postponement period, you should call the number on the notice to have the penalty abated.
In addition, if you are a taxpayer who lives outside the disaster area but whose records necessary to meet a deadline occurring during the postponement period are located in the affected area, contact the IRS at 866-562-5227. They will work with you for potential relief.
Finally, taxpayers assisting the relief activities who are affiliated with a recognized government or philanthropic organization also qualify for relief, even if they live outside the disaster area. They should also contact the IRS at the number above.