Taxpayers May Qualify for Disaster Relief

The Nation experienced a number of natural disasters in 2016 and early 2017. These natural disasters included flooding, straight-line winds, hurricanes, tornadoes and severe storms. Many taxpayers affected by the severe weather may qualify for tax relief by the IRS.

The tax or disaster relief gives taxpayers more time to meet tax filing and payment deadlines. Damage assessments by FEMA help the IRS determine states and counties that receive tax relief. Typically, new deadlines are announced throughout the year as disaster declarations are made. The latest being February 7, 2017 in response to the severe storms in the state of Louisiana.

It is important that tax professionals are aware of new deadlines and which taxpayers qualify.

Who is affected? The most recent tax relief declarations affecting the April 18 tax deadline involve certain areas of Georgia, Mississippi and Louisiana. These states experienced tornadoes, straight-line winds and severe storms in January and February 2017.  Select counties received the tax relief based on damage assessments. Declarations were also made for counties in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Florida and Georgia affected by Hurricane Matthew. However, the declarations do not affect the April 18 deadline.

What are the new deadlines?

Georgia, Mississippi and Louisiana: The deadline is June 30, 2017 for individuals residing and businesses operating in the affected areas, filing 2016 income tax returns. This also applies to taxpayers making quarterly estimated tax payments that are due between February 7 and June 30, 2017. Penalties will not be applied if the payment is completed by June 30.

Where can I find more information? Visit the IRS.gov tax relief information hub for complete details including affected counties, qualifications, deadlines and more. Taxpayers do not need to contact the IRS to get relief.