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Tax Relief, IRS & Stimulus Checks

WHAT TO DO IF YOU NEED RELIEF FROM YOUR TAX BILL
WHAT TO DO IF YOU NEED RELIEF FROM YOUR TAX BILL

These are difficult financial times. You are not alone if you are worrying about your family finances and struggling to pay bills. The good news is that the government recognizes that most of us are being impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, physically and financially. Therefore the government is helping with tax stimulus programs (to put some extra money into people’s pockets) and with tax relief programs (to take less money away in taxes). Here are some resources you can use if you need relief from your tax bill.

The main thing to know is you are not dealing with the fall-out from the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic alone and you can get help. You should know and consider the following:

  • You can take advantage of the temporary reprieve for filing your federal taxes; the IRS has extended the deadline for filing federal taxes until July 15, 2020; this is intended to help all taxpayers -- individuals, couples, families and businesses -- in recognition that many of us have been affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic; 
  • All 41 states with personal income tax have also extended their deadlines for filing state taxes; check your state’s website for information. Most states have extended their tax filing deadlines to July 15, 2020 to line up with the new federal filing date. Some other states, for example, California, have set a new filing deadline of June 15, 2020; that is the second-most common new filing deadline. Others, such as Mississippi have an earlier deadline of May 15, 2020. These deadlines might be further extended, so it is important to consult with a tax professional or regularly check your state’s website;
  • Understand the federal government’s tax stimulus package; the federal government has approved sending stimulus checks to taxpayers; whether you are eligible for a check and how much you will receive depends on your income and your household income (generally speaking, you get a reduced check the more money you make). If you have not received a direct deposit, you will receive a paper check if you are eligible.  It is a good idea to visit the IRS’s website and update your contact information; you may do so at: https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/economic-impact-payments;
  • Understand how big your check should be: people with an adjusted gross income below $75,000 (or $150,000 for a married couple) will receive the maximum amount: $1,200 per adult or $2,400 for a married couple. In addition, people are eligible for an additional $500 per child under 17 in the household. If your adjusted gross income is greater than this, your check will decrease in proportion to the additional amount you make, and if you make more than $98,000 as an individual or $198,000 as a married couple, you will not receive a stimulus check; 
  • Consider consulting a tax attorney or other tax professional; tax issues (even calculating your adjusted gross income) are complicated, and the amount you need to pay depends on the answers to several complicated questions. If you are facing the possibility of falling behind on your taxes or are facing a large unexpected tax bill, you can often negotiate a repayment plan; it is important to approach the government proactively and work out a schedule that works for you and your family, to avoid your wages being garnished and other penalties. In this situation, when negotiation with the government is critical to protecting your financial well-being and your assets, a consultation with an experienced tax attorney can help. This is especially important right now, during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, as tax attorneys and other tax professionals are best positioned to explain what programs you might be eligible for and what tax relief is available to you. 

The main thing to know is you are not alone, you might well be entitled to tax relief or a stimulus check, and that you can consult with a professional for more help with your taxes.

Sometimes you need to consult with an attorney about your overall financial picture, your tax liability and your rights. A Court Buddy can help. We have experienced lawyers nationwide; they can talk with you to better understand your situation, help you understand your rights, provide you with advice and counsel, make a plan, prepare and file your taxes and related paperwork for you and your family, negotiate a payment plan or ward-off wage garnishment, lawsuits or other collections efforts if you fall behind. There are many ways for you to secure tax relief, a brighter financial future and peace of mind for you and your family.

 
 

FAQs 

Do I Pay My Taxes?
Yes, you need to pay your taxes. The good news is that this year, the IRS has pushed the tax deadline back to July 15, 2020. Many states have extended their filing deadlines as well.
What Happens If I Do Not Pay My Taxes?
You always need to pay your taxes. Sometimes you can take an extension, deferment, or negotiate a repayment plan. But, if you do not pay your tax bill, the government has many options to collect, including direct wage garnishment.
How Do I Get Help?
If you need help with your taxes, it is important to consult with a professional. If you want to negotiate an extension, deferment, or installment repayment plan, you can do that with the IRS or your state tax authority yourself, or get professional help. If you need to consult with a lawyer, Court Buddy can help.
Here are resources where you can learn about tax deadlines, tax relief programs, and the tax stimulus program:
Here you can find sample letters to request tax relief:

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