Extension Filers Now Have Until January 31, 2018 to File
IRS Tax Alert IR-2017-172
Issued Oct. 13, 2017
Victims of wildfires ravaging parts of California now have until Jan. 31, 2018, to file certain individual and business tax returns and make certain tax payments, the Internal Revenue Service announced today.
This includes an additional filing extension for taxpayers with valid extensions that run out October 16, 2017.
Currently, the IRS is providing relief to seven California counties:
Individuals and businesses in these localities, as well as firefighters and relief workers who live elsewhere, qualify for the extension. The agency will continue to closely monitor this disaster and may provide other relief to these and other affected localities.
Tax Relief for California Individuals and Businesses in Wildfire Affected Areas
The tax relief postpones various tax filing and payment deadlines that occurred starting on October 8, 2017. As a result, affected individuals and businesses will have until January 31, 2018, to file returns and pay any taxes originally due during this period.
This includes the January. 16, 2018 deadline for making quarterly estimated tax payments. For individual tax filers, it also includes 2016 income tax returns that received a tax-filing extension until October 16, 2017. The IRS noted, however, that because tax payments related to these 2016 returns were originally due on April 18, 2017, those payments are not eligible for this relief.
A variety of business tax deadlines are also affected, including the October 31 deadline for quarterly payroll and excise tax returns. Calendar-year tax-exempt organizations whose 2016 extensions run out on November 15, 2017 also qualify for the extra time.
In addition, the IRS is waiving late-deposit penalties for federal payroll and excise tax deposits normally due after October 8 and before October 23, if the deposits are made by October 23, 2017. Details on available relief can be found on the disaster relief page on IRS.gov.
The IRS automatically provides filing and penalty relief to any taxpayer with an IRS address of record located in the disaster area. Thus, taxpayers need not contact the IRS to get this relief. However, if an affected taxpayer receives a late filing or late payment penalty notice from the IRS that has an original or extended filing, payment or deposit due date falling within the postponement period, the taxpayer should call the number on the notice to have the penalty abated.
In addition, the IRS will 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. Taxpayers qualifying for relief who live outside the disaster area need to contact the IRS at 866-562-5227. This also includes firefighters and workers assisting the relief activities who are affiliated with a recognized government or philanthropic organization.
Individuals and businesses who suffered uninsured or unreimbursed disaster-related losses can choose to claim them on either the return for the year the loss occurred (in this instance, the 2017 return normally filed next year) or the return for the prior year (2016). See Publication 547 for details.
The tax relief is part of a coordinated federal response to the damage caused by these wildfires and is based on local damage assessments by FEMA. For information on disaster recovery, visit disasterassistance.gov.