Wednesday, November 28, 2007

IRS eases tax timeline for those in burn areas

10-30-07 / Union Tribune

The Internal Revenue Service yesterday gave residents of California counties hit by wildfires additional time to file tax returns.

The agency said those affected by the fires will have until Jan. 31 to file returns and pay taxes on items due on or after Oct. 21, when the fires began. Those items include the federal withholding tax return, Form 941, normally due Oct. 31, and the estimated tax payment for the fourth quarter, normally due Jan. 15.

Taxpayers in seven counties covered by a presidential disaster declaration are eligible for the delay. Those counties are San Diego, Riverside, Orange, Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Santa Barbara and Ventura.

Certain penalty deposits due between Oct. 21 and Nov. 5 will also be waived as long as the deposits are made by Monday, the IRS said.

The IRS said its computers identify taxpayers in the disaster areas and apply automatic filing and payment relief. The agency said taxpayers in the areas also have the option of claiming disaster-related casualty losses on their federal income tax return for either this year or last year.

The state Franchise Tax Board also announced yesterday that taxpayers affected by the wildfires in any of the federally declared disaster areas will be given special tax relief.

For more information, taxpayers can check the Franchise Tax Board's Web site at People who have questions about their accounts can call (800) 852-5711 from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday

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