Weather victims in Georgia, Alabama, get tax breaks from the IRS

Storm victims in parts of Georgia and Alabama now have until May 15 of this year to file various federal income tax returns for individuals and businesses and make tax payments.

The IRS offers relief for areas designated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Individuals and households residing or having a business in Butts, Henry, Jasper, Meriwether, Newton, Spalding and Troup counties in Georgia or in Autauga and Dallas counties in Alabama are eligible.

Other areas added later will also qualify; see current list of places the IRS disaster relief page.

The relief postpones various filing and payment deadlines that began Jan. 12. Affected individuals and businesses have until May 15 to file returns and pay any taxes initially due during that period. This includes 2022 income tax returns due April 18, as well as various 2022 corporate returns due March 15 and April 18.

Eligible taxpayers also have until May 15 to make 2022 contributions to their IRAs and health savings accounts.

Farmers who waive estimated tax payments and normally submit their returns by March 1st now have until May 15th to submit their 2022 return and pay any taxes due. The May deadline applies to quarterly estimated tax payments, which are normally due on January 17 and April 18: Individual taxpayers can skip the fourth quarter 2022 estimated tax payment, which is normally due on January 17, and instead enter the file their 2022 tax returns on or before May 15

The May 15 deadline also applies to quarterly payroll and consumption tax returns, which are normally due on January 31 and April 30. Penalties for payroll and excise deposits due on or after January 12th and before January 27th will be reduced if tax deposits are made by January 27th.

Details of other declarations, payments and tax actions that are eligible for the additional time are here.

The IRS automatically provides a filing and penalty relief to any taxpayer with a registered IRS address in the disaster area; Taxpayers do not have to contact the agency. If an affected taxpayer receives a late filing or late payment notice from the IRS whose original or extended filing, payment, or escrow date falls within the deferral period, the taxpayer should call the number on the notice to have the penalty relaxed. The IRS will work with any taxpayer who lives outside of the disaster area but whose records are in the affected area.

Taxpayers who are eligible for relief and live outside the disaster area must call (866) 562-5227. This includes employees who support the relief efforts and are affiliated with a recognized government or philanthropic organization.

Individuals and businesses in a state-declared disaster area that have suffered uninsured or unrecoverable catastrophe-related losses may claim them on their tax return for the year the damage occurred or on their tax return for the previous year. You should write the FEMA declaration number (4684-DR for Alabama, 4685-DR for Georgia) on any return claiming a loss.