IRS Provides Relief to Taxpayers and IRS for Deadlines, "Time Sensitive" Actions

April 17, 2020

The IRS recently extended additional tax deadlines, and issued guidance on filings affected by the COVID-19 relief legislation.

First, Notice 2020-23 expands and amplifies the IRS’s prior COVID-19 related tax deadline relief (see our prior alert). Prior notices were limited to income tax returns and payments that were due on April 15, 2020. This most recent notice expands the extensions to more types of tax (list provided below), and extends deadlines falling between April 1, 2020 and July 14, 2020, to July 15, 2020.

The notice also gives the IRS an extra 30 days to perform “Time Sensitive IRS Actions” which are due on or after April 6 and before July 15. These actions include assessing any tax, giving or making notice or demand for payment of any tax, bringing suit by the United States, and allowing credit or refund of any tax. Similarly, taxpayers have until July 15, 2020 to perform “Specified Time-Sensitive Actions,” which are due on or after April 1. These actions include the time for filing all petitions with the Tax Court, or for review of a decision rendered by the Tax Court, filing a claim for credit or refund of any tax, and bringing suit upon a claim for credit or refund of any tax.

Second, the IRS also recently issued a list of frequently asked questions and answers (FAQs) for temporary procedures for faxing certain Forms 1139 and 1045 due to COVID-19 and the implementation of two CARES Act provisions. Section 2303 of the CARES Act made changes to the rules regarding net operating loss carrybacks, and Section 2305 allows for acceleration of recovery of any remaining minimum corporate tax. Both of these provisions may result in refunds for past years. The newly issued FAQs provide that, starting on April 17, 2020, and until further notice, the IRS will accept eligible refund claims Forms 1139 and 1405 submitted via fax. In addition, the FAQs state that additional instructions for these forms will be issued to allow taxpayers to claim tentative refunds for years with outstanding Section 965(h) net tax liabilities. The FAQs also list instructions for using 2018 Forms 1139 and 8827 to claim tentative refunds based on changes in the CARES Act.

Finally, the IRS also recently issued Revenue Procedure 2020-23, which permits partnerships to file amended returns and recognize the CARES Act benefits sooner than if they had to file administrative adjustment requests.

The recent CARES Act provides over $2 trillion worth of economic relief to taxpayers, and includes new tax credits and changes to the tax code. However, careful consideration should be given to the way in which these changes interact with other code provisions, like those in the TCJA. Taxpayers should use the extra time provided by Notice 2020-23 and other extensions to determine if any provisions can provide relief during the COVID-19 emergency and plan how best to take advantage of these provisions, some of which can be utilized in the 2019 tax year. Finally, taxpayers should be careful to abide by any deadlines that have not extended, or to seek extensions for actions that need to be taken after July 15th for which compliance may be hampered by the crisis.

The payment and filing obligations specified in Notice 2020-23 include:

S. Starling Marshall
Partner – New York
Phone: +1 212.895.4263
Email: smarshall@crowell.com



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