Tax Relief for Storm Victims

11/1/2012 | Written by: Karen Reed

President Obama signed major disaster declarations for several counties of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut affected by Superstorm Sandy. Presidential emergency declarations were issued for counties in Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and the District of Columbia.

Presidential declarations allow the IRS to grant relief to taxpayers who reside or have businesses in affected locations. Disaster relief generally includes postponement of filing and payment deadlines. As of the date of the publication of this article, the relief announced extends the due date for payroll and excise tax returns and payments normally due on October 31 until November 7. Additional relief will be announced by the IRS in the coming weeks.

While the IRS makes allowances for time-sensitive obligations during times of disaster, it does not relieve taxpayers of the burden of producing documents in an audit, even when records have been lost in fires or floods. The Service expects taxpayers to be prepared for disasters by keeping a set of back-up records. Check back next month for an update on available disaster relief, and for tips to help you recover your lost documents and tax information.