COVID-19 Official Notices

COVID-19 Official Notices

Official Notices

Areas, regions, or specific situations where the federal government acknowledges a significant outbreak. (declared disaster or emergency) IRS.gov/coronavirus

March 11, 2020

The President ordered the Treasury and the IRS to announce an extended due date.

  • “... defer tax payments without interest or penalties for certain individuals and businesses negatively impacted.”

March 13, 2020

The President declared a state of emergency.

March 17, 2020

The Treasury Secretary stated that tax and penalties are being deferred by 90 days.

March 18, 2020

The IRS and Treasury released details for the extended due date to pay income taxes.

  • The deadline to pay income tax and self-employment tax is July 15.
  • The estimated tax payments due on April 15 are deferred until July 15.
  • All taxpayers that owe tax by April 15 are termed “Affected Taxpayers.”

March 20, 2020

The IRS releases notice expanding deadlines.

  • The deadline to file tax returns is extended to July 15.

Business returns that were due March 16 have an extended due date of July 15.

  • The limit on the amount of tax that can be deferred has been removed.

All federal income tax, self-employment tax, and estimated payments originally due on April 15 are deferred.

The IRS has temporarily closed all Taxpayer Assistance Centers.

March 24, 2020

The IRS clarifies key information and highlights mission-critical functions.

2 refundable credits for 100% of qualified paid sick and child care leave. (FFCR Act)

  • Up to 80 hours of paid sick leave credit. (2 weeks, 5 days/week)
  • Up to 400 hours of expanded paid child care leave credit. (additional 10 weeks)
  • Includes 100% of health insurance costs paid or accrued during the leave.
  • File the taxpayer’s payroll taxes as usual to obtain the credit.
  • Available to self-employed individuals.

The IRS encourages anyone who has not filed their tax returns to do so as soon as possible. Credits and rebates are issued based on 2018 or 2019 tax returns.

Telephone lines that are still open may have long wait times.

  • These lines are closed: Practitioner Priority Service (PPS), e-Services, FIRE, and AIR.
  • These services are closed: Income Verification Express Services (IVES).
  • As of March 29, the IRS is unable to answer questions on the Stimulus package.
  • The IRS created a page to answer common questions about the filing deadlines.

March 25, 2020

The IRS releases its People First Initiative.

Payment for Existing Installment Agreements are suspended between April 1 and July 15

  • Interest will still accrue during this period.
  • The IRS will not default on any Installment Agreements.
  • Taxpayers may pay on their balance if they choose.
  • Taxpayers may enter into new agreements during this period.

The IRS will not close any pending Offer in Compromise requests before July 15.

  • Taxpayers have until July 15 to resolve OIC requests for additional information.
  • OIC payments are suspended until July 15, but they will continue to accrue interest.
  • The IRS will not default on delinquent returns before July 15.
  • The IRS will continue to process OIC requests.

Field Collection Activities are suspended until July 15.

  • Liens, levies, and seizure activities are suspended.
  • Includes the IRS’ automated systems.
  • Except for high-income earners and non-filers.

Field, Office, and Correspondence Audits may continue.

Wherever an examiner can work remotely, correspondence and audits will continue.

The IRS encourages taxpayers to respond to all new or old correspondence quickly to avoid further delays and penalties.

EITC and Wage Verification Reviews may continue through July 15.

  • The IRS will NOT deny EITC because of a failure to provide the requested information.
  • The IRS will require the requested information by July 15 or the taxpayer will have to pay back the credit amount plus penalties.

Other activities that are continuing:

  • The Independent Office of Appeals will hold telephone or video conferences.
  • The IRS will prioritize activities where there is a statute of limitation due in 2020.
    • There are no universal extensions for statutes of limitation.

Other activities that are suspended until July 15:

  • Passport certification for “seriously delinquent” taxpayers.
  • No new delinquent accounts to private debt collection offices.

March 29, 2020

The Treasury Secretary announces their intention to pay individual rebates within the next 3 weeks and to create an online portal for direct deposit information.

  • The IRS is creating the online portal for taxpayers to change or add direct deposit information.

March 30, 2020

The IRS extends other filing deadlines.

  • The deadline to file the FATCA Report (Form 8966 - March 31) is extended to July 15.
  • The dealing to file and pay taxes owed on U.S. Gift and Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax Returns (Form 709 - April 15) is extended to July 15.
    • To file an extension for an October 15 due date use Form 8892.

The IRS issued a news release regarding the “Economic Impact Payment” (EIP).

  • Most taxpayers will receive the rebate automatically beginning in the next 3 weeks (April 13).
  • Those not usually required to file a return will need to submit a simple return to receive the payment.
  • Seniors receiving social security benefits only do not need to file a return.
  • The $500 child rebate is not limited by AGI thresholds.
  • The economic impact payments are available through the rest of 2020.
  • The IRS will not use the terms “Stimulus Check” or Stimulus Payment”.

March 31, 2020

The IRS issued a news release on claiming the Employee Retention Credit.

Refundable credit for 50% of wages paid. (CARES Act)

  • Only $10,000 in wages paid during the year are eligible.
  • The maximum credit is $5,000.
  • For payroll during March 13, 2020, to December 31, 2020.
  • “Financially impacted” businesses qualify if at least one of the following is true:
    • Operations are fully or partially suspended by government orders.
    • Gross receipts from a comparable quarter fall below 50%.
      • Remains in effect until gross receipts go above 80%.

Exceptions:

  • State and local governments and their instrumentalities.
  • Small businesses who take small business loans due to COVID-19.
  • For businesses with more than 100 employees, the credit is only allowed for wages paid to employees who are not working due to COVID-19.
  • Complete quarterly employment tax returns or Form 941.
    • Submit Form 7200 for an advance payment.

April 2, 2020

The IRS issues guidance on the Employer’s Payroll Contributions.

  • Failure-to-deposit penalty for the employer’s contributions to FICA or RRTA is deferred.
    • On wages paid to COVID-19 affected employees:
      • Qualified Leave Wages paid from April 1 to December 31, 2020 (FFCR Act).
      • Qualified Retention Wages paid from March 13 to December 31, 2020 (CARES Act).
    • 50% is owed by December 31, 2021, and the remaining by December 31, 2022.
      • For deposits made or missed from March 27 through December 31, 2020.

April 6, 2020

The IRS issues a QuickAlert on Filing Zero Liability Returns to tax software companies.

  • Instructions on how to file “Simple” returns in Quick Information.
  • ​​​​​​The IRS issues FAQ page on Economic Impact Payments.

April 9, 2020

The IRS issues notice expanding tax filing and payments deadlines.

  • Filing forms and payments due during April 1 through July 15, 2020 have a due date of July 15.
    • The due date for June 15 estimated payments (Q2) is extended.
    • Forms 1040, 1040-ES, 1040-SR, 1040-NR, 1040-PR, 1040-SS
    • Forms 1065, 1066, 1120, 1120-S, and all other 1120, 1041, 706, 709, estate, trust, business, investment, exempt organization, and estimated tax forms.
    • Any schedule attached to the above forms have the same extended due date.

Application for the Annual Filing Season Program deadline of April 15 is extended to July 15.

The deadline to claim a refund for 2016 tax returns is now July 15.

The IRS issued a news release on their operational status.

  • The IRS has stopped processing paper returns.
    • If the taxpayer has already filed their return by mail, DO NOT FILE AGAIN.
    • “Reduced response” for paper correspondence.
      • Longer than usual wait times.
  • Get Transcript Online is still operational.

Automated phone lines are still operational, but customer service representatives are not available.

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