Another Deferral – This Time, an April 15 Tax Filing Extension

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March 23 update:  The IRS very late on March 20 formalized Sec. Mnuchin’s tweet by issuing Notice 2020-18.  It not only extended the filing deadlines for most income tax returns normally due by April 15 until July 15 as described below, but it also expanded the payment deferrals described in now-superseded Notice 2020-17.  It did so by removing Notice 2020-17’s cap on the amount that could be deferred, now allowing unlimited amounts of the qualifying types of taxes due on April 15 to instead be paid by July 15.

The IRS today announced plans to alter the filing deadline of tax returns from April 15 to July 15, 2020.

Two days ago, the IRS issued Notice 2020-17, providing an extension of time to make payments of most taxes due April 15. The notice stated, though, that the deferral applied only to payments, and that the related returns or extensions still were due by April 15, 2020. Significantly, today’s news extends the deferral to the filing of the forms, thereby allowing the filing date to match the payment date.

Some caution, though, is in order. The earlier deferral applied only to income tax (rather than to, for example, estate or gift tax), so the possibility remains that Forms 706 and 709 and related taxes are still due by April 15.

At the time this is published, news of the filing extension is available only in the form of a tweet from Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, who stated that at President Trump’s direction, “we are moving Tax Day from April 15 to July 15. All taxpayers and businesses will have this additional time to file and make payments without interest or penalties.”

News is coming fast and furiously from Washington, often first by informal means that leave many questions unanswered, followed by formal guidance. We saw that earlier this week with verbal comments sharing news of the payment deferral, followed by the IRS Notice.

We expect to receive more guidance and details on this matter soon, and will be providing updates on a regular basis.

For more information, please contact your BNN tax advisor at 800.244.7444.

Disclaimer of Liability: This publication is intended to provide general information to our clients and friends. It does not constitute accounting, tax, investment, or legal advice; nor is it intended to convey a thorough treatment of the subject matter.

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