Disastrous Tax Issues

Today TaxMama® says we are facing Hurricane Irma in Florida, dealing with the devastation of Harvey in Texas – and the biggest fire in Los Angeles history. So let’s talk about the special tax breaks available to you.




Dear Friends and Family,

Generally, whenever a major disaster strikes in the United States, the president issues a declaration – which triggers some special tax breaks and extensions for those in the disaster area.

In this case, President Trump has issued declarations for 9 disasters,  since taking office. We know there will be one for Hurricane Irma. But, so far, he has not issued the usual declaration for the Los Angeles – La Tuna fires. (But that’s a whole other discussion.)

The most important tax break facing us right now is – additional time. On September 15, we have several things due. The 3rd quarter estimated tax payment for individuals and businesses; the final filing deadline for calendar-year partnerships, S corporations, and trusts (if they were on extension); and certain payroll tax deposits for the previous quarter… Then we have another set of deadlines on October 15th for personal and C corporation tax returns – and the rest of the taxes that are due.

Disaster areas with qualifying presidential disaster declarations have additional time to file returns, forms and payments – without incurring penalties. Although interest will continue to accrue. For the most part, the IRS has announced that Hurricane Harvey victims have until January 31, 2018 to file their forms and pay the relevant taxes. Folks in Virginia’s storm areas in July have until November 30, 2017. Victims of Michigan’s June storms have until October 31, 2017.

It’s important to look up the information related to your state in order to learn if you are entitled to the special tax breaks.

Another valuable benefit of the presidential declaration is to allow taxpayers to report their casualty losses in one of three different years. They can report the loss in the year before the event, the year of the event, or the year when the losses are settled with the insurance company. This makes it possible for you to either get faster refunds, for much needed immediate cash; or to take your losses in the year that gives you the best tax break.

For more disaster-related tips – https://taxmama.com/tax-quips/disasters-and-other-pleasant-experiences/

To make comments and toss in your own ideas, please drop into the TaxQuips Forum.

And remember, you can find answers to all kinds of questions about disasters and other tax and business issues, free. Where? Where else? At www.TaxMama.com.

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