United States

IRS Announces Tax Relief for Louisiana and South Carolina

Announcement extends relief as a result of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma

TAX ALERT  | 

On Oct. 24, the IRS published announcements providing tax relief for regions of Louisiana (LA-2017-03) and South Carolina (SC-2017-01) related to Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, respectively, that moved through the regions in Aug. and Sept.     

The relief granted by the IRS applies to the Louisiana parishes of Acadia, Allen, Assumption, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, DeSoto, Iberia, Jefferson Davis, Lafayette, Lafourche, Natchitoches, Plaquemines, Rapides, Red River, Sabine, St. Charles, St. Mary, Vermilion and Vernon; and the South Carolina counties of Allendale, Anderson, Bamberg, Barnwell, Beaufort, Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester, Edgefield, Georgetown, Hampton, Jasper, McCormick, Oconee and Pickens Counties.  The tax relief in both announcements automatically applies to taxpayers located in the stated regions.

Like tax relief for other major disasters, these provisions also extend to taxpayers not located within the declared disaster area but whose records necessary to meet a tax filing deadline are located within the impacted declared areas.These taxpayers include workers assisting the relief efforts who are affiliated with a recognized government or philanthropic organization. All qualifying taxpayers with an address outside of the impacted areas must contact the IRS at 866.562.5227.

Grant of Relief

The tax relief postpones various tax filing and payment deadlines due on or after Aug. 27, 2017, for Louisiana locations and Sept. 6, 2017, for South Carolina locations. Like other recent disaster relief announcements, it postpones filing and payment deadlines until Jan. 31, 2018, for affected individuals and businesses, which includes the Sept. 15, 2017, and Jan. 16, 2018, deadlines for making quarterly estimated tax payments. For individual tax filers, the relief also includes 2016 income tax returns that received a tax-filing extension until Oct. 16, 2017, but not the tax payment, which was due April 18, 2017.

For impacted taxpayers in the Louisiana regions, the IRS will waive any late-deposit penalties for federal payroll and excise tax deposits normally due after Aug. 27, 2017, and before Sept. 11, 2017, if the deposits are made by Sept.11, 2017.

For impacted taxpayers in the South Carolina regions, the IRS will waive any late-deposit penalties for federal payroll and excise tax deposits normally due after Sept. 6, 2017 and before Sept.  21, 2017, if the deposits are made by Sept. 21, 2017.

These declarations also trigger special provisions that give affected taxpayers the option of claiming disaster-related casualty losses on their federal income tax return either in the year the event occurred or in the preceding tax year.

Due to the late timing of the announcements, many impacted taxpayers may have already filed a return or made tax payments. However, if an impacted taxpayer acted late, the IRS will abate any related penalties so long as the act occurred within the timeframe specified by the region-specific announcement.

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