This TIR announces that the Massachusetts Department of Revenue (“Department”) will grant automatic extensions of time until July 15, 2013 for certain tax filings and payments normally required to be made by affected taxpayers, as described below, on April 16, 2013. The Internal Revenue Service (”IRS”) has also announced extensions of time for certain federal tax filing and payment deadlines. See IRS Release 12-2013-43 (Apr. 16, 2013).
II. Grant of Relief
A. Taxpayer Extensions
The due date for certain returns and tax payments required from affected taxpayers, as described below, will be extended until July 15, 2013. Subject to the exclusions described below, this special extension applies to tax returns, filings for regular extensions and tax payments, including estimated tax payments, that have either an original or an extended due date of April 16, 2013. For example, this extension applies to the filing of individual income tax returns, estate and trust income tax returns, estate tax returns, and partnership returns that have an April 16, 2013 filing due date, as well as to payments that are due with such returns. This extension also applies to the filing of corporate excise, including S corporation returns or unrelated business income tax returns in the instance of a business corporation or non-profit corporation with a fiscal year-end that has an April 16, 2013 filing due date, as well as to payments that are due with such returns. The extension also applies to estimated personal income tax payments that would normally be due by April 16, 2013. However, as described below, this extension does not apply to trustee tax returns and payments, including those relating to sales or use taxes, meals taxes, room occupancy taxes, and employer and other withholding taxes. Further, this extension does not apply to taxpayers that have previously filed their returns but not yet made payment. See, further, Paragraph II.B. below.
B. Exclusions; Other Relief Criteria
The extensions for affected taxpayers, as described below, that are provided pursuant to this TIR do not apply to trustee tax returns and payments, including sales or use tax returns and payments, meals tax returns and payments, room occupancy tax returns and payments, and employer and other withholding tax returns and payments. However, the Department expects that late-file and late-pay penalties will generally be waived with respect to such trustee tax returns and payments where the taxpayer has reasonable cause for the late filing and payment under existing Departmental procedures for reasonable cause. See AP 633. In addition, the extensions do not apply to taxpayers that have previously filed their returns but not yet made payment.
During the time of the extensions, when applicable, no penalties will accrue. However, a taxpayer that does not meet the extended July 15, 2013 due date will owe penalties dating back to the original tax return or tax payment due date. By law, interest will still accrue from April 16, 2013 for any period for which payments are deferred after that due date pursuant to this extension.
The extension of time granted under this TIR shall not affect tax deficiencies existing prior to April 16, 2013, nor will it apply to claims for refund or abatement, the making of elections, the filing of any other tax documents with the Department, or filings with the Appellate Tax Board or tax appeals filed with Massachusetts Courts.
III. Affected Taxpayers
For purposes of this TIR, “affected taxpayers” are all individual taxpayers living in Suffolk County and all other Massachusetts personal income tax filers and business and corporate taxpayers whose income or corporate excise filings and payments were adversely impacted by the explosions on April 15, 2013. Taxpayers whose filings and payments were adversely impacted by the explosions may include those whose tax preparers or availability of needed records were directly impacted by the explosions.
IV. To Claim the Extension
Generally the Department will automatically provide filing and payment extensions, as described herein, for electronically-filed returns by affected taxpayers. If for some reason a taxpayer is unable to file electronically, the taxpayer’s paper forms and returns should be marked at top in red ink with the notation “2013 Boston Marathon.” Any affected taxpayer who files and pays by the extended deadline and still receives late filing or payment penalties or other charges inconsistent with this TIR should electronically file Form CA-6 to request an abatement of such charges through the Department’s website at www.mass.gov/dor, using either Webfile for Income or Webfile for Business.
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With respect to taxpayers affected by the Boston Marathon Explosions, this TIR supersedes all earlier TIRs and public written statements issued by the Department to the extent that such TIRs or other public written statements may relate to extensions of time for complying with Massachusetts tax obligations of the affected taxpayers.
Commissioner of Revenue
April 18, 2013