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Update: Treasury Department Extends Tax Filing Deadline to July 15

The Treasury Department extends the US federal tax filing deadline from April 15 to July 15

This week’s surge in the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases was accompanied by frequent responses at the federal level directed at mitigating the economic consequences of the virus. This morning, following a delay in the timeline for making tax payments due April 15, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced that the Treasury Department will also extend the tax filing deadline by 90 days, thereby pushing the April 15 filing deadline to July 15 (without the need to file for an extension).

The new development came just one day after the Internal Revenue Service issued Notice 2020-17, deferring the payment date for making US federal income tax payments due April 15, 2020, to July 15, 2020. By moving the tax filing day from April 15 to July 15, Secretary Mnuchin noted that “all taxpayers and businesses will have this additional time to file and make payments without interest or penalties.” Nonetheless, many taxpayers who may be entitled to refunds will consider filing sooner rather than later so as to receive refunds of overpaid taxes.

We further note that both this guidance and the delayed payment requirements announced in Notice 2020-17 yesterday apply only to payments and filings due April 15, 2020. They do not address or provide for a delay for other payment or filing obligations, including second-quarter estimated tax payments due on June 15, 2020. Thus, payments of 2020 second quarter estimated tax payments may oddly be due prior to the extended due date for 2020 first-quarter payments.

State tax departments continue to respond to the crisis as well. For example, the Massachusetts Department of Revenue historically follows Internal Revenue Service tax return filing deadlines, and a department source we spoke with recommended that taxpayers monitor the department’s website in the near future to determine whether the department will follow the federal approach. We expect other states to follow this approach and announce similar delays in 2019 income tax return filing deadlines.

We will continue to monitor developments, and this alert will be updated to reflect any further clarifications once formal guidance from the US Treasury or Internal Revenue Service is issued. 

Read our previous alert “IRS Issues Guidance on Extension of April 15 Tax Payment Deadline to Minimize Financial Distress.”

Read our updated alert “IRS Bolsters Taxpayer Relief by Extending 300 Tax Filing, Payment and Administrative Deadlines.”

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