While I was peacefully asleep in Dubai (we do have an 8 hour time difference to the East Coast of the USA), Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin announced in a tweet that “Tax Day” is being moved from April 15 to July 15. For those who fear that Tweets may not be a reliable source of US tax information, the IRS after retweeting the original tweet, has issued guidance, making the tweet somewhat more official. The guidance makes clear that the due date for filing tax returns and making tax payments has been extended from April 15 to July 15.
You can read the IRS guidance Notice 2020-18 here . An excerpt follows toward the end of this post.
Accordingly, federal tax return filing obligations, and not just the deadline for paying federal income taxes, has been moved to July 15. Some states are considering whether to make similar changes. California and Connecticut have already announced that they are following the lead of the federal government in pushing back their tax payment and filing deadlines to July 15 and there are reports that New York is following suit.
Please note — No extension is provided in the Notice for the filing of any Federal information return. For example, Form 3520 is not part of the US income tax return. It is a separate information return and is sent to the Internal Revenue Service Center, P.O. Box 409101, Ogden, UT 84409. As such, the due date for the Form 3520 is without regard to the recent IRS extensions granted for income tax returns and payments as set out in IRS Notice 2020-18. You can read more about this issue in my blog post here.
FBAR Filing Not Impacted
Please note that Foreign Bank & Financial Account Reports, the so-called FBAR (FORM 114) are NOT part of one’s federal tax return, so the due date for the FBAR remains the same, unless we hear otherwise. In the event of a natural disaster, the government may further extend the FBAR due date. You can monitor the relevant FBAR Relief Notices for complete information.
Currently – The filing due date to file/report the FBAR 2019 is April 15th 2020 and automatic extension is till October 15th 2020; a request for an extension is not required. Since the automatic FBAR filing extension is in fact beyond the date of extension granted by Notice 2020-18, it is likely that the extended FBAR filing date will remain the same.
EXCERPTS from Notice 2020-18
Relief for Taxpayers Affected by Ongoing Coronavirus Disease 2019 Pandemic
III. GRANT OF RELIEF
The Secretary of the Treasury has determined that any person with a Federal
income tax payment or a Federal income tax return due April 15, 2020, is affected by
the COVID-19 emergency for purposes of the relief described in this section III (Affected
Taxpayer). The term “person” includes an individual, a trust, estate, partnership,
association, company or corporation, as provided in section 7701(a)(1) of the Code.
For an Affected Taxpayer, the due date for filing Federal income tax returns and
making Federal income tax payments due April 15, 2020, is automatically postponed to
July 15, 2020. Affected Taxpayers do not have to file Forms 4868 or 7004. There is no
limitation on the amount of the payment that may be postponed.
No extension is provided in this notice for the payment or deposit of any other
type of Federal tax, or for the filing of any Federal information return.
As a result of the postponement of the due date for filing Federal income tax
returns and making Federal income tax payments from April 15, 2020, to July 15, 2020,
the period beginning on April 15, 2020, and ending on July 15, 2020, will be disregarded
in the calculation of any interest, penalty, or addition to tax for failure to file the Federal
income tax returns or to pay the Federal income taxes postponed by this notice.
Interest, penalties, and additions to tax with respect to such postponed Federal income
tax filings and payments will begin to accrue on July 16, 2020.
Posted March 21, 2020
UPDATED — March 26 and 28, 2020
On Tuesday, March 24, the IRS posted 24 questions and answers (FAQs) on its website, clarifying certain points about the tax filing and payment extensions. For example, the answers clarify that only payments that are actually due on April 15 are delayed. This means that first quarter 2020 estimated income tax payments and Section 965(h) transition tax installment payments due April 15 are postponed until July 15, but June 15 estimated tax payments are not postponed. The relief does not apply to estate and gift taxes or payroll and excise taxes or to information return filings.
UPDATED April 13, 2020
More extensions provided by IRS — generally all information returns, related elections and payments. My blog post here.
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