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Also see: Deadline for Income Tax Returns and Payments Postponed to July 15 due to COVID-19.

CPA Sample Client Letter: Coronavirus-Related Postponement of Tax Deadlines.

(Parker Tax Publishing March 2020)

Dear [client name],

As our community works to overcome the damage inflicted by coronavirus pandemic, I'm writing to make you aware of the postponement of income tax filing and payment deadlines.

In accordance with President Trump's recent emergency declaration under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act in response to the ongoing Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the IRS issued Notice 2020-18, which provides that the due date for all income tax returns and income tax payments previously due on April 15, 2020, are automatically postponed to July 15, 2020, for all affected persons. The IRS notice also extends the due date for making 2019 individual retirement account, health savings account, and Archer MSA contributions to July 15, 2020.

Any person with a federal income tax payment or a federal income tax return due April 15, 2020, is considered affected by the COVID-19 emergency and is thus an "affected taxpayer." This postponement applies to individuals, trusts, estates, partnerships, associations, companies, and corporations. Neither you nor your business have to file a Form 4868, Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return, or Form 7004, Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File Certain Business Income Tax, Information, and Other Returns.

The new due date for filing federal income tax returns and making federal income tax payments is July 15, 2020. There is no limit on the amount of your tax payment that may be postponed. In addition, the period beginning on April 15, 2020, and ending on July 15, 2020, will be disregarded in calculating any interest, penalty, or addition to tax for failure to file the income tax returns or to pay any income taxes due. Interest, penalties, and additions to tax with respect to such postponed filings and payments will begin to accrue on July 16, 2020.

The relief provided in Notice 2020-18 is available solely with respect to federal income tax payments (including payments of tax on self-employment income) and federal income tax returns due on April 15, 2020, in respect of your 2019 tax year, and federal estimated income tax payments (including payments of tax on self-employment income) due on April 15, 2020, for your 2020 tax year. No extension is provided for the payment or deposit of any other type of federal tax, or for the filing of any federal information return.

While delaying filing a return will make sense for many taxpayers who owe additional taxes, it may be less attractive for taxpayers who are expecting a refund (the IRS is expected to continue to processing returns and issuing refunds in the coming months).

Please let me know if you have any questions regarding this tax relief and when you might like to meet, in person or virtually, to discuss your tax return.


[Your Name, Your Firm

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