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03.19.20   |   COVID-19, Insights

Rules Relaxed on Tax Payments, but Not Tax Filing

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On top of the other problems presented by COVID-19, Americans are also facing the dreaded tax deadline of April 15, 2020.

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin recently said that the IRS will allow the postponement, without interest or penalty, of up to $1 million worth of federal income tax payments until July 15, 2020. This is designed to help small pass-through businesses. Since this statement, Mnuchin has clarified that the tax filing deadline remains April 15, 2020, unless taxpayers file the usual extension request. The IRS released guidance on March 18, 2020, confirming previous statements by Mnuchin.

This IRS guidance allows individual taxpayers to postpone payment of up to $1 million of federal income taxes without interest or penalty until July 15, 2020, and C corporations filing individual or consolidated returns to postpone payment of up to $10 million without interest or penalty until July 15, 2020.  The postponed payment may be either final tax owed for tax year 2019, or it may be first quarter estimated taxes for tax year 2020.

Suggestions to delay the filing deadline have not been adopted.  You should proceed to either file your tax returns or file for an extension on or before April 15, 2020. Payments otherwise due April 15, 2020, are postponed to the extent described above.

On a state level, Ohio has said that state tax filing and payment timelines will mirror the federal rules, as they change.  

Finally, readers should be aware of COVID-19 tax and business scams. If you receive a call from the “United States Treasury”, the “Small Business Administration”, or some other person claiming to offer tax information or business assistance, such call is likely a scam. The United States Treasury does not call taxpayers.

Like most issues with COVID-19, tax advice is changing rapidly, so be sure to consult your tax accountant for up-to-date information.

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