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Tax Relief Extended to California Fire Victims

The Internal Revenue Service has extended tax relief to victims of the California wildfires. Qualified taxpayers and businesses now have until January 31, 2018 to file certain returns and make some tax payments.

Currently residents of seven California counties qualify for IRS relief. Individuals and businesses in Butte, Lake, Mendocino, Napa, Nevada, Sonoma and Yuba counties – as well as firefighters and relief workers in those locations – qualify for the extension. Other locations may be added to the relief list as the disaster declaration grows.

The relief measures postpone various tax filing and payment deadlines that started October 8. Taxpayers and businesses in the disaster area now have until January 31, 2018 to file returns and pay any tax originally due during the period. This includes the January 16, 2018 deadline for quarterly estimated tax payments.

It also applies for taxpayers who were granted an extension of time to file their 2016 income tax returns until October 16; they now have until the January 31, 2018 date to file their 2016 return. However, since any tax due was expected on April 18, those payments are not part of the granted relief.

A variety of business tax deadlines are also affected, including the October 31 deadline for quarterly payroll and excise tax returns. Calendar-year tax-exempt organizations whose 2016 extensions run out on November 15 also qualify for the extra time. Details on available relief can be found on the disaster relief page on IRS.gov.

Taxpayers qualifying for relief who live outside the disaster area should contact the IRS at 866-562-5227. This also includes firefighters and workers assisting the relief activities who are affiliated with a recognized government or charitable organization.

Bob Williams

Forget genes; I’ve got words in my DNA. Communication has been part of who I am nearly all my life. From a long career in radio news to another one in newspapers – and a University of Georgia journalism degree sandwiched between the two – language has been my life. I’ve also been fortunate to have learned the tax business from the ground up here at Drake, starting with 1040.com online forms some years ago before moving on to work on the Web. In all things tax-ish, we aim to give you tools you can use.

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