Who is eligible for tax relief after a disaster?
A federally declared disaster happens when the President declares that an area affectedk by a disaster is eligible for federal assistance. You can find a list of federally declared disasters on the FEMA website.
When there is a federally declared disaster, the government provides several types of tax relief. To be eligible for the tax relief, you must be an “affected taxpayer.” You are an affected taxpayer if you cannot meet a filing or payment deadline and you:
Live in the disaster area,
Are a relief worker, or
The tax records needed to file are in the disaster area. This might be the case if your tax preparer is in the disaster area.
An affected taxpayer may be:
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What are my rights to tax relief after a disaster?
The IRS allows several forms of tax relief for affected taxpayers:
Extensions to file or pay taxes. You have until the last day of the Extension Period to file tax returns or make tax payments.
Claim casualty losses. A casualty loss is property that is damaged or destroyed by a disaster. You can claim disaster-related casualty losses on your federal income tax return for this year or last year.
Other relief. You may need copies of previous tax returns to apply for benefits or to file an amended return. The IRS will waive the fees and expedite requests for copies of these documents.
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