Tax Relief

Texas winter storm victims obtain a deadline extension and different tax breaks

WASHINGTON – Victims of this month’s Texas winter storms have until June 15, 2021 to file and file various tax returns for individuals and businesses, the Internal Revenue Service announced today.

According to the recent Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) disaster declaration, the IRS is providing this relief to the entire state of Texas. Taxpayers in other states affected by these winter storms who receive similar FEMA disaster declarations will automatically receive the same filing and payment facility. The current list of eligible locations is always available on the Disaster Relief page on IRS.gov.

The tax break is postponing various tax filing and payment deadlines that began on February 11th. As a result, affected individuals and businesses have until June 15, 2021 to file tax returns and pay any taxes originally due during that period. This includes individual and business returns for 2020, which are normally due on April 15th, as well as various business returns for 2020, which are due on March 15th. Among other things, this also means that affected taxpayers have until June 15 to make IRA contributions for 2020.

The June 15 deadline also applies to quarterly estimated income tax payments due April 15 and the quarterly wage and excise returns normally due April 30. It also applies to tax-exempt organizations that operate on a calendar year basis and a 2020 return due May 17th.

In addition, penalties for wage and excise tax deposits due on or after February 11 and before February 26 will be reduced as long as deposits are made by February 26.

Please refer to the IRS Disaster Relief page for details on other returns, payments, and tax measures that may be eligible for the additional time.

The IRS automatically offers filing and penalty relief to any taxpayer with an IRS address located in the disaster area. Hence, taxpayers do not need to turn to the agency for this relief. However, if an affected taxpayer receives a late filing or late payment notification from the IRS whose original or extended filing, payment or deposit date is within the deferred period, the taxpayer should call the number on the notice to receive the fine abated.

In addition, the IRS will work with any taxpayer living outside the disaster area whose records required to meet a deadline during the grace period are in the affected area. Taxpayers who qualify for relief and live outside the disaster area must contact the IRS at 866-562-5227. This also includes workers who support the relief effort and who belong to a recognized government or philanthropic organization.

Individuals and companies in a disaster area declared by the federal government who have suffered uninsured or non-reimbursed catastrophe-related losses can either claim them for the return for the year in which the damage occurred (in this case the return normally submitted in the next year in 2021) , or claim for the return for the previous year. This means that taxpayers can, at their own discretion, claim these losses on the 2020 tax return they fill out this tax season. Be sure to write the FEMA Declaration Number 4586 on any return that has a claim for loss. See publication 547 for details.

The tax relief is part of a coordinated federal response to the damage caused by these storms and is based on local damage assessments by FEMA. For information on disaster recovery, see Disasterassistance.gov.

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