WASHINGTON – Sens. John Kennedy (R-La.) and Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) today introduced the Filing Relief for Natural Disasters Act to provide relief for taxpayers in states that have issued state-level disaster declarations. Currently, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has the authority to postpone tax filing deadlines following a presidentially-declared federal disaster, but not following the declaration of a state-level emergency.
“Louisianians have been hit with all the storms nature has to offer. While our people do the hard work of rebuilding, even a little commonsense help can go a long way, including extensions for filing taxes. This bill would make sure that Louisiana has the freedom to provide disaster victims with the federal tax extensions they need to recover. I’m thankful to partner with Sen. Cortez Masto on this effort,” said Kennedy.
“While I’m glad the administration heeded my call and issued a federal disaster declaration for Nevada counties impacted by severe flooding, too many communities harmed by natural disasters each year miss out on the critical tax relief that comes with federal recognition. My bipartisan bill will fix this problem and support more Nevada taxpayers experiencing extreme weather and wildfires,” said Cortez Masto.
Sens. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) and Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) also cosponsored the legislation.
The Filing Relief for Natural Disasters Act would allow the governor of a state or territory to extend a federal tax filing deadline following a state-declared emergency or disaster instead of waiting for a federally-declared disaster. This means that states would have the ability to provide tax relief independent of the federal government’s involvement in an emergency or natural disaster.
The Filing Relief for Natural Disasters Act would also expand the mandatory federal filing extension from 60 days to 120 days.
Full text of the Filing Relief for Natural Disasters Act is available here.