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September 2017

Hurricane Harvey Federal Tax Extensions


The IRS officially announced in IR-2017-135, IR-2017-138 and IR-2017-160 that filing deadlines will be extended until Jan. 31, 2018, for most tax returns for individuals who live and businesses whose principal place of business is located in the Hurricane Harvey disaster area (see below). These include:


·        Individual, corporate, estate, trust, partnerships, S corporation, gift, generation skipping transfer, tax exempt, benefit plan, employment and excise tax returns for which the initial due date (including extensions) was after Aug. 23 and before Jan. 31, 2018;

·        Quarterly estimated taxes originally due on Sept. 15, 2017, and Jan. 16, 2018; and

·        Quarterly payroll and excise tax returns that would have been due on Oct. 31, 2017.


It is important to note that the IRS has not granted extensions for information returns, including Forms W-2, 1094, 1095, 1097, 1098, 1099, 1042-S, 3921, 3922, 8025, 8027, or for employment or excise tax deposits (other than those due on Oct. 31, see above). However, any penalties imposed on deposits due after Aug. 22 and before Sept. 7 will be abated if the deposits were made by Sept. 7, 2017. A timely written request for abatement may be required if the penalty is not automatically waived.


IR-2017-160 specifies that if employers provide cash payments to certain charities in exchange for an employee’s vacation, sick or personal leave at the employee’s request before Jan. 1, 2019, the employers will receive charitable deductions, but the employees will not have to report the income. Also, the rules permitting loans from 401(k) and employer-provided retirement plans have been liberalized until Jan. 31, 2018, for victims of the hurricane and for individuals outside the disaster area who are assisting family members within the disaster area.  


The IRS also announced that taxpayers in the disaster area have the option of claiming a disaster-related casualty loss on either their 2017 returns or amended 2016 returns. 


The IRS indicates a willingness to work “with any 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.” Individuals and businesses in this situation are urged to call 866-562-5227.


Check the IRS website for further updates.


Individuals who reside or have a business in Aransas, Austin, Bastrop, Bee, Bexar, Brazoria, Burleson, Calhoun, Chambers, Colorado, Dallas, DeWitt, Fayette, Fort Bend, Galveston, Goliad, Gonzales, Grimes, Hardin, Harris, Jackson, Jasper, Jefferson, Karnes, Kleberg, Lavaca, Lee, Liberty, Madison, Matagorda, Montgomery, Newton, Nueces, Orange, Polk, Refugio, Sabine, San Jacinto, San Patricio, Tarrant, Travis, Tyler, Victoria, Walker, Waller, Washington, and Wharton Counties may qualify for tax relief.

TSCPA Asks Congress to Grant Automatic Extensions for Taxpayers Affected by Hurricane Harvey

On Sept. 8, TSCPA sent a letter urging Congress to pass legislation that would extend tax filing deadlines for those impacted by Hurricane Harvey. In the letter, TSCPA also supports legislation that would automatically extend reporting deadlines for all tax-related documents and elections in the event of a federally-declared disaster.

Read the letter