The Internal Revenue Service announced tax relief to affected individuals and businesses after the destruction that Hurricane Sandy unleashed. Those affected in Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, and other areas may qualify for this tax relief. If the location is deemed a disaster area, then any tax relief is automatically provided and contact with the IRS is not necessary.
Among the tax relief efforts are an extension of various tax filing and payments. The fourth quarter individual estimated tax payments are due February 1, 2013 instead of January 15, 2013. Payroll and excise tax returns and payments are also due now on February 1, 2013. Any late-payment or filing penalties will be abated for those in the affected areas.
For individuals that live outside of disaster areas but whose books, records, or tax activities were affected by the hurricane, then tax relief is possible. Contact the IRS at 866-562-5227 to find out your eligibility. There is also an online questionnaire which can assist you on which forms of assistance you can receive here.
Any employee that donates vacation, sick, or personal leave in exchange for employer contributions to Hurricane Sandy relief will not be taxed on those earnings. These are called leave-sharing donation programs. Additionally, the employers can still deduct the amounts as business expenses. Neither employee or employer who take part in these donation programs will be able to deduct these as contributions on their tax returns.
For more information check out the IRS website on disaster assistance here.