tax obligation changes due to coronavirus

Tax Obligation Changes Due to Coronavirus

Tax Law

We are in the middle of a pandemic. It has come on so suddenly that many of our government institutions have had to make dramatic changes relatively quickly to keep up with the ever-changing nature of this health crisis.  

Government Adapting During the Health Crisis

One of those government institutions that is trying to adapt to the challenges of the pandemic is the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The IRS, like everyone in the country, knows very well that we all have priorities that should take precedence over taxes.  

Indeed, filing a tax return is falling low on the “to-do” list these days when we are all worried about taking care of our children due to widespread school closures, about working remotely, or about struggling to handle the day-to-day expenses of life and obtain unemployment benefits when we are unable to work. 

The IRS, accordingly, has been doing what it can to not overburden taxpayers and has tried as much as possible to lighten the load, tax-wise, for all of us. In this article, we will discuss the various changes the IRS has made this tax year to respond to the health crisis that is upon us.  

If after reading this blog, you have additional questions about your need for tax debt planning in Florida, please contact The Law Office of Mary King, P.L. We are attorneys who are laser-focused on tax debt planning in Florida.  We provide services in all areas from debt settlement to planning the most efficient tax strategy for individuals and businesses. Call today at 941-906-7585, or fill out our contact form. We are here to help you.  

IRS Measures and Other Government Assistance Due to the Coronavirus Outbreak

Below is a list of just some of the measures that the IRS has implemented in response to our current health crisis. You should note that individual states are beginning to follow the IRS’s lead, in the hopes of taking pressure off of taxpayers during the coronavirus outbreak, but you need to check with your individual state to confirm what changes they have made.

1. Tax Returns Due July 15 instead of April 15

First and foremost, the IRS has taken the responsible step of extending the tax filing due date from April 15, 2020, to July 15, 2020. That means that taxpayers may also defer their federal income tax payments to July 15 without penalty or interest, regardless of how much the taxpayer owes.  

The deferment applies to everyone who pays taxes in the U.S., including corporations, non-corporations, and those who pay self-employment taxes.

It is worth noting that the extension to July 15 is automatic. That is important because it means that you do not have to file any kind of IRS form to take advantage of the extension. It is simply the new deadline for all taxpayers.  

2. Do I Have to Wait Until July 15 to File My Tax Returns?

No. Just because the tax deadline has been extended automatically does not mean that you need to wait to file your taxes. You can file your tax return whenever it is ready. In fact, if you have a refund coming your way this year, then we would recommend filing as early as possible, so you can get your refund as early as possible.  

Indeed, we all want to make sure that we have cash flow during these tough times. So, getting your tax refund sooner rather than later can be vital for paying the basics like rent and food.  

The IRS is still in operation during the crisis. That means that your tax return if filed now, will be processed.  Refunds will continue to be paid.  

In fact, for the fastest results, you should use the IRS’s free online filing options – eFile or Free File.

3. Can I Still File an Extension Beyond July 15?

Yes. Those individual taxpayers who need additional time to file beyond the July 15 deadline can request a filing extension by filing Form 4868 through their tax professional, tax software, or the Free File link on  Businesses that need an extension must file Form 7004.

4. Are All Tax Deadlines, Even State Ones, Extended Automatically?

Not necessarily. Be sure to check your individual state. Just recently the State of New Jersey and New York extended their state tax deadlines to July 15, consistent with the IRS.  However, every state is handling this matter differently, so you need to check your state’s website to get its specific tax deadline. The IRS’s deadline extension only applies to federal income tax returns and tax payments.

5. Will I Be Getting a Check in the Mail or Directly Deposited from the Government Due to the Health Crisis?

It depends. Congress just passed a coronavirus stimulus bill, titled the “CAREs Act” that will provide $1,200 to each individual taxpayer, and an additional $500 for each child based on the information the IRS has from your 2018 tax return.  

The checks will go to single individuals who make $75,000 or less per year. A lesser amount, on a graduated scale, will go to taxpayers who make between $75,000 and $99,000. No money will go to those who make more than $99,000.

6. What If I Did Not File a Tax Return in 2018?

The IRS encourages those who have not filed taxes in 2018 (but had a tax obligation) to act now. The stimulus checks discussed above are based on information provided in the 2018 tax returns. Therefore, in order to take advantage of the stimulus checks, you should consider contacting a tax professional and explore your options.

Get the Help of an Experienced Attorney to Handle Your Tax Planning in Florida

If you are struggling with back taxes, or if you are a business that needs to plan tax payments throughout the year, then you need the help of an attorney who has experience with tax planning attorney in Florida. The Law Office of Mary King P.L. can help. We are experienced tax debt attorneys in Sarasota, Florida, and we offer complete services in all areas from tax implications of alimony to planning the most efficient tax strategy for individuals and businesses.  

Call our IRS problem-solving services firm in Florida today to schedule an initial consultation. With years of experience, the Law Office of Mary E. King can make sure that your tax issues are resolved in your favor. Fill out our online contact form, or call us at 941-906-7585.

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