By Rolando Garcia, JD, CPA, Shareholder, Houston Tax Advisor

Several businesses and individuals were severely impacted by the winter storms that hit Texas last week, resulting in President Biden declaring a large part of the state as a major disaster. Following the disaster declaration issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced on Mon., Feb. 22, 2021, some tax relief for taxpayers in devastated areas, which includes extensions to upcoming tax deadlines as well as casualty loss tax relief.

Victims of the recent winter storms in Texas now have until June 15, 2021, to file various business and individual federal tax returns as well as make tax payments. The Texas franchise tax deadline has also been extended from May 15 to June 15. Taxpayers in other states impacted by these winter storms that receive similar FEMA disaster declarations will automatically receive the same filing and payment relief.

This tax relief postpones various tax filing and payment deadlines that occurred starting on Feb. 11, 2021, including:

  • Any 2020 individual and business returns due on April 15
  • Various 2020 business returns due on March 15
  • Quarterly estimated income tax payments due on April 15
  • Quarterly payroll and excise tax returns due on April 30
  • Tax-exempt organizations operating on a calendar-year basis with a 2020 return due on May 17

Penalties on payroll and excise tax deposits due on or after Feb. 11, 2021, and before Feb. 26, 2021, will also be abated as long as deposits are made by Feb. 26, 2021. Additionally, affected taxpayers have until June 15, 2021, to make 2020 Individual Retirement Account (IRA) contributions.

In addition, businesses and individuals in a federally declared disaster area who suffered uninsured or unreimbursed disaster-related losses can choose to claim them on either the return for the year the loss occurred (the 2021 return normally filed next year) or the return for the prior year (the 2020 return they are filing this year).

The IRS automatically provides filing and penalty relief to any taxpayer with an IRS address of record located in a disaster area. If an affected taxpayer receives a late filing or late penalty notice from the IRS that has an original or extended filing, payment or deposit due date falling within the postponement period, they should work with their Houston CPA to have the penalty abated.

We understand the challenges brought on by the recent storms and Doeren Mayhew’s dedicated Houston tax advisors stand ready to help provide solutions to offer some financial relief. To learn more or obtain assistance, contact us today.