There are two things in life that humans cannot escape (or so the saying goes): death and taxes. While the American people will not exactly be escaping taxes in 2020, there is a bit of a reprieve as part of the endless measures to combat the Coronavirus and its effects. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced on Friday, March 20, that the deadline to file taxes has been moved from the traditional April 15 deadline to July 15.
“All taxpayers and businesses will have this additional time to file and make payments without interest or penalties,” Mnuchin wrote in a tweet. However, the secretary also urged taxpayers who might be getting a refund “to file now to get your money.”
Approximately 59.2 million refunds have been issued as of March 13 out of the 7.2 million tax returns received, which comes out to about 77.7% of the returns filed at that time.
There has been some confusion because the July 15 date was already set, but this wasn’t for the actual filing of taxes. Instead, the extension was to provide taxpayers an extra 90 days to pay the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) whatever they may owe for their 2019 returns. However, accountants and tax preparers have stressed concern over the ability to provide service to their clients under all the restraints and orders in place, forcing businesses to close and people to self-isolate.
The National Society of Accountants reached out to the president of the IRS to explain the situation, citing in a letter that firms were worried they would not be able to get everything filed by the April 15 deadline:
“These clients are reporting day-to-day business disruptions including travel restrictions, supply chain interruptions, and diminished customer traffic resulting in reduced revenue and limited access to tax documentation. Our members are indicating that these developments present significant challenges for clients in organizing tax records and making final and/or estimated tax payments.”
Many elderly clients do not have access to equipment, such as scanners, that might be needed to provide documents to their accountants; paperwork that would usually be dropped off in person. Because of the social isolation orders in place, they may not be able to visit children or grandchildren who might be able to help them with the technological challenges.
It is a matter of debate how much financial help this extension will be for the economy. While it keeps money in the hands of Americans, it may only be a short-lived reprieve. Yet, the government is taking all kinds of extreme steps to try and ease the fears of the people and keep the economy from going belly up. Aside from the Coronavirus relief bill, which will help employers and employees affected by closure or lack of business, President Donald Trump also recently requested that all federal student loan payments be deferred, without penalty, for 60 days.
Liberty Nation’s James Fite said:
“If the government forces people to miss work, it is obligated to help replace that income somehow – but wouldn’t it be better if the politicians and bureaucrats just stayed home instead? Either way, it is the American people who pay the price, and it costs us more in the long run if the government has to step in and manage our lives.”
The government definitely has stepped in, but some folks will likely breathe a little easier knowing they have a couple more months before they have to file their taxes. For others, during self-isolation, this might be the perfect time to sit down and really hammer out those tax forms.
Read more from Kelli Ballard.
For home study students and young people, Liberty Nation recommends…
All About Taxes
High School: Taxation: How Does it Affect You?
Middle School: Taxation: What is it?
Elementary School: What are Taxes?
All About Coronavirus
High School: Coronavirus: What it is and How Not to Get it
Middle School: Coronavirus: Just the Facts
Elementary School: Coronavirus: What is it?