IRS Extends July 15 Deadlines and Provides Other Relief for Victims of Tennessee Storms

June 23, 2020

The IRS has announced taxpayers affected by the April tornadoes and severe storms in Tennessee will have until Oct. 15, 2020, to file various individual and business tax returns and make payments.

The IRS is offering relief to any area designated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as qualifying for individual assistance. Currently, this includes Bradley and Hamilton counties in Tennessee. Taxpayers in localities added later to the disaster area will automatically receive the same relief. Taxpayers do not need to contact the IRS to receive the relief, as it is automatically provided to anyone with an IRS address of record in the area.

The tax relief postpones various filing and payment deadlines that occurred starting on April 12. Affected individuals and businesses will have until Oct. 15, 2020, to file returns and pay taxes that were originally due during this period, including 2019 individual and business returns that were due on July 15 due to COVID-19. Affected taxpayers will also have until Oct. 15 to make 2019 IRA contributions.

The Oct. 15 deadline also applies to estimated tax payments for the first two quarters of 2020 that were due on July 15, and the third quarter estimated tax payment normally due on Sept. 15. It also includes the quarterly payroll and excise tax returns normally due on April 30 and July 31.    

In addition, penalties on payroll and excise tax deposits due on or after April 12 and before April 27 will be abated as long as the deposits were made by April 27.

If an affected taxpayer receives a late filing or late payment penalty notice from the IRS that has an original or extended filing, payment, or deposit due date falling within the postponement period, the taxpayer should call the number on the notice to have the penalty abated.

Individuals and businesses in a federally declared disaster area who suffered uninsured or unreimbursed disaster-related losses can choose to claim them on their return for either 2020 or 2019. The FEMA declaration number - 4541 for Tennessee - must be included on any return claiming a loss.

The IRS will also work with any taxpayer who lives outside the disaster area but whose records necessary to meet a deadline occurring during the postponement period are located in the affected area. This also includes workers assisting with relief activities who are affiliated with a recognized government or philanthropic organization. Taxpayers qualifying for relief who live outside the disaster area need to contact the IRS at 866-562-5227 once normal IRS operations resume.

For more information, including the current list of areas eligible for relief, visit the IRS disaster relief page.