Since the onset of COVID-19, various tax relief measures for individuals and businesses impacted by the ongoing pandemic were implemented. The Department of Revenue (DOR) will continue to share current information about COVID-related changes on this page and through the DOR Legal Library.
Filing and payment due date extensions
Extensions for filing returns and making payments for room occupancy excise and sales and use taxes (including meals tax and local option)
Due dates of March 20, 2020 – June 1, 2021 for filing returns and making payments are extended to October 30, 2021 (due November 1, next succeeding business day). For sales and use taxes (including meals tax and local option) and room occupancy excise (including local option), this applies to vendors or property operators with cumulative liability under $150,000 in the 12-month period ending February 29, 2020. The extended due date does not apply to intermediaries.
Penalty Waiver for those with over $150,000 of cumulative liability
For vendors or property operators and intermediaries with cumulative liability for meals taxes or room occupancy excise of $150,000 or more during the 12-month period ending February 29, 2020, penalties will be waived for late filing and late payment with respect to returns and payments due March 20, 2020 through June 1, 2021 if filed and paid by October 30, 2021 (due November 1, next succeeding business day). Interest will continue to accrue.
What steps should I take if I have not filed all required tax returns?
Taxpayers must file all outstanding returns for tax periods February 2020 through April 2021 by November 1st. For any periods where no tax is due, sales/use and meals tax returns showing zero tax must be filed. If your business has closed permanently, be sure to close all tax accounts effective as of the actual date the business closed.
What if I can’t pay in full by November 1st?
For taxpayers with an extended due date of October 30th (vendors and operators with cumulative liability under $150,000 for the 12-month period ending February 29, 2020) penalty and interest will begin to accrue after November 1st on any unpaid amounts.
For vendors or operators with cumulative liability $150,000 or more for the 12-month period ending February 29, 2020, only penalties will be waived for the applicable tax periods. Interest is calculated from the original due date for each tax period. If the tax remains unpaid after November 1st, both penalties and interest will accrue going forward on any unpaid amounts.
Payment agreements are available. Learn more about the qualifications for a payment agreement and how to set up and maintain an agreement.
Tax or debt resolutions
DOR has provided relief to ease the burden on people facing tax issues. The vast majority of payment agreements will not be canceled for missing payments due to the COVID emergency. DOR continues to accept hardship applications. Learn more about hardship status.
Certificates of Good Standing
If you need a certificate of good standing for a small business loan or for any other reason, see Request a Certificate of Good Standing-Tax Compliance or a Corporate Tax Lien Waiver. If you are missing recent tax returns specifically due to recent COVID-related due date extensions, you may not be able to obtain a certificate online. Here are 3 possible alternative options for obtaining a certificate:
- Send us a message through your MassTaxConnect account and let us know that you need a Certificate of Good Standing and why you need it.
- Print the paper application and fax it to us at 617-660-3611. Write coronavirus across the top.
- Call the Certificate Unit staff at 617-887-6400.
DOR’s Office of Appeals
Taxpayers filing a new appeal, whether pre-assessment or post-assessment, are encouraged to use MassTaxConnect. Choose “file an appeal” after logging in. Although the Office of Appeals is not currently holding in-person conferences with taxpayers, conferences may be held over the telephone or through virtual technology such as Zoom or Teams. To the extent they can, taxpayers are encouraged to promptly respond to any outstanding requests for information from the Office of Appeals. Responses through MassTaxConnect or secure e-mail are recommended. If the documents requested are not available at this time, taxpayers are encouraged to contact Appeals Officers to request additional time to respond.
Petitions to Appellate Tax Board if DOR Issues an Abatement Denial Notice, and Taxpayers Continue to Disagree with DOR
If DOR issues an abatement denial notice (Notice of Abatement Determination), taxpayers who disagree may file a petition with the Appellate Tax Board (ATB), an entity separate and independent from DOR. For more information, please see the ATB website. A petition to the ATB must be in writing and a copy of the petition must be sent to DOR. Sending a copy to DOR helps ensure that collection action is put on hold in a timely manner. You may e-mail your DOR copy to DORCopiesofATBPetitionsFiled@dor.state.ma.us, however, this does not satisfy your requirement to file your appeal with the Appellate Tax Board. Sending petitions to the Appellate Tax Board by mail is recommended. The Notice of Abatement Determination has mailing addresses for both the ATB and DOR’s Litigation Bureau and we’ve included them below:
|Appellate Tax Board
100 Cambridge Street, Suite 200
Boston, MA 02114
|Commissioner of Revenue
PO Box 9565
Boston, MA 02114-9565
Although Litigation Bureau attorneys are not meeting with taxpayers or their representatives in face-to-face meetings, they continue to work to resolve cases and are available to discuss their cases by email and by scheduled telephone calls. The Litigation Bureau also suggests that you consult the websites of the courts and the Appellate Tax Board concerning their respective operations. All orders issued by the trial and appellate courts in response to the pandemic, and information concerning the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Massachusetts, can be found online.
Communicating with DOR
Avoid paper delays and choose an electronic option for communicating with us. You can ensure that returns, payments, and refunds are received if you submit them or receive them electronically.
To make tax payments, check on your refund, and more, visit MassTaxConnect.
If DOR requests information from you, please respond by uploading the information through MassTaxConnect if that option is offered in the notice you receive. It’s fast, it’s easy and no account is required. You can always upload documents through MassTaxConnect by attaching them to a message sent through your account.
If you are not registered with MassTaxConnect, start by choosing “Sign up” under the Log in button and follow the prompts. You’ll find links at the bottom of the MassTaxConnect homepage for both FAQs and how-to videos about MassTaxConnect. If you need help submitting your documents, call us at (617) 887-6367.
You can find more contact information for DOR on the website.
To get all important updates from DOR, just sign up with your email.
Division of Local Services
Local officials, and those working on behalf of municipalities, should consult with local counsel for legal advice. Local officials with urgent municipal finance and regulatory compliance questions should visit:
Child Support Enforcement
Child support staff are available to meet with you remotely rather than in person. If you need child support assistance, you can:
- Call CSE with questions at (617) 660 1234 or (800) 332-2733.
- Visit CSE’s website
- You can send us a secure email, see specific information about your case, or update your information by clicking on “Login to your Case Manager account” under the Online section. (If you don’t already have an account, you will be able to create one.)
- To help us respond faster, please update your email address and phone number(s) so that we have the most up-to-date information available if we need to reach you.
- If you have general questions, you can contact CSE by email. Call our Interactive Voice Response Phone System at (800) 332-2733 and follow the prompts to get automated information that is available 24/7.
- We now have a dedicated Spanish IVR available for customers to reach us.
- You can speak to a Child Support Specialist on the CSE Virtual Counter Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. by accessing this link:
scanning the QR code below:
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I make a payment?
You will find information on how to pay by mail, online, in person or over the phone on our website. We continue to explore additional options for customers to make child support payments. Please continue to check back regularly for further options that may become available.
What if my financial situation changed and I am unable to afford my child support?
Contact us at (617) 660-1234 or (800) 332-2733 or email us. We will work together with you to determine if your child support order is no longer consistent with the Massachusetts Child Support Guidelines and if it isn’t, assist you with returning to court.
How can I apply for services?
Learn how to apply online or by email for child support services.
Can DOR help me in establishing a child support order?
Yes, DOR and the Probate and Family Court bring matters to Court and most matters are heard virtually. DOR will send instructions explaining how to appear virtually for your child support hearing. We also hold several Case Conferencing sessions per week. If you receive notice of a Case Conferencing session, you are required to appear just as you would for a hearing. If you are unable to join either a hearing or Case Conference session, please call the number provided on the notice or the CSE Customer Service Bureau at (800) 332-2733.
Can I walk into a DOR office?
DOR’s Child Support Offices in Boston, Taunton, Woburn, Worcester and Springfield will be open to walk-ins on Tuesdays and Wednesdays beginning on July 27th. Offices are open from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.