As part of its coronavirus response, the federal government has announced a 90-day grace period, changing the tax deadline to July 15, 2020. We are awaiting IRS regulations to be issued providing more details regarding this grace period.
The U.S. Treasury will give tax filers 90 extra days to pay income taxes due on up to $1 million in taxes owed, which should cover many pass-through entities and small businesses. Corporate filers will also get the same amount of time to pay taxes due on up to $10 million in taxes owed. During that period, interest and penalties will not be accruing. (It has not yet been announced whether quarterly tax payments typically due on April 15, 2020 will also be extended.)
If taxpayers need more time to file, they can file for an automatic six-month extension to file, but any taxes owed will still be due on July 15, 2020.
We are currently waiting for Massachusetts to respond in similar fashion.
Our office response to the pandemic, pending MA taking similar action, is the following:
1. In-person contact at the office is limited to dropping off documents. Please do not come into the office otherwise. Utilize phone and email communications.
2. Payment for services will be required prior to your return being electronically filed:
a) Payment can be enclosed with your signed e-file forms.
b) Credit card payments can be made over the phone with our office.
c) We will send a Square.com email invoice for you to pay immediately online.
3. We will utilize electronic means as much as necessary to complete electronic filing documents and forms.
4. Completed tax return packages will be mailed to clients.
5. Our office staff will not be working extended hours. They will only be accessing the office from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm each day.
6. Phone calls may be answered by general machine message for periods of time during the day in order to maximize output of client work.
7. We will work to complete tax returns on time for the July 15th deadline, pending MA taking similar action. When an update from MA comes out, we will update you further.
8. Should a Shelter-in-Place order be issued, our office will be closed for the duration of the order.
We understand that many of our clients need their returns completed and access to refunds as soon as possible. We are asking our clients for patience while we all work through the same issues every person in this country will be facing over these next months.
While we are very sensitive to the life-changing effects this pandemic is having on many people, calling our office to check on your return only creates more delays in our staff being able to address workloads with our limited time. We request calls be limited to information related to completing your returns.
Each of our office members is affected by having children home. If a staff member, or a member of their household, becomes ill, they will be quarantined at home. In a small office, the quarantining of any staff member creates a significant workload change.
We will continue to communicate updates to our clients through this newsletter, social media outlets, and directly on our website.