Tax Professional Newsletter 04/29/2020
Tax Department response to novel coronavirus
In the wake of the COVID 19 outbreak, we realize that you and your clients have a variety of tax-related concerns. The Tax Department is monitoring the situation closely, and we’re making every effort to provide you with the most up-to-date information available.
Thus far, we have provided the following assistance:
- extended due dates for certain tax returns and other filings
- offered relief from certain penalties
- allowed electronic signatures
For the latest tax-related updates, visit Tax Department response to novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
Payments and bills
If your client has been directly impacted by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and is unable to make their regularly scheduled payments to the Tax Department, they can contact us at 518-457-5434 during regular business hours—Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m.– 4:30 p.m. If you have a valid Power of Attorney on file, you can contact the department on their behalf. For faster service, please have your client’s Social Security number or employer identification number (EIN) available when you call.
Our representatives can assist with the following payment issues related to existing bills:
- installment payment agreements (IPAs)
- income execution payments
- other collection-related matters
Proof of residency for qualifying children
If your client received a letter requesting additional information regarding proof of residency for qualifying children, you should be aware that, due to school and office closings, the department has provided a 30 day extension to respond.
We understand that it may be difficult for your client to obtain the necessary documents from a doctor’s office or a school to prove residency of qualifying children. We will now be accepting additional documents as proof. For more information, view Checklist for acceptable proof of a child or dependent.
Data security for tax professionals
As you change business practices in response to COVID-19—particularly if you’re working from home—it’s critical that you take the time to review your data security practices. Along with the IRS, we’re urging tax professionals to be vigilant and ensure they’re taking the necessary precautions to safeguard confidential client information.
To learn more about steps you can take to protect your clients’ data—and your own—please view Protect yourself from data security breaches.
We urge you to share this information with professional colleagues and any professional organizations you may be a member of.
Defend against identity theft
If you or your client has been the victim of identity theft, you should visit Identity theft affecting your tax records.
You should also:
- Notify the Federal Trade Commission at IdentityTheft.gov.
- Notify the Internal Revenue Service and fill out IRS Form 14039, Identity Theft Affidavit.
- Contact a credit bureau to place a fraud alert on your credit record.
- Equifax: 1-800-766-0008
- Experian: 1-888-397-3742
- TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289
Time to check your assessments
In most towns, particularly in Upstate New York, the time to review assessments on property is when the tentative assessment roll is published on May 1. Your clients can check the roll to ensure that their assessments are fair and that they’re receiving the exemptions they’re eligible for. For more information, visit Check your assessment.
In most communities, Grievance Day—the deadline to challenge assessments—is the fourth Tuesday in May, but the date does vary.
However, due to the recent Executive Order Number 202.22, local governments have been provided with additional options about assessment rolls and Grievance Day. Your client should inquire with their assessor’s office to confirm the dates in your locality. Local governments are now authorized to:
- Publish tentative and final assessment rolls up to 30 days later than generally required.
- Suspend in-person public inspection of the tentative assessment roll.
- Extend the date of Grievance Day, as long as it’s at least 21 days after tentative roll date.
- Hold Grievance Day remotely by conference call or similar service.
Keep up with tax changes
The Tax Professional Newsletter is a monthly summary of recent changes and new information. To receive updates as we announce them, subscribe to new tax topics as we add them to our Subscription Service. We’ll share links to new resources and tax tips as they become available.
Recently added topics include:
- Cigarette, tobacco, and vapor products taxes
- Medical marijuana and opioid excise taxes
- Real estate transfer tax and mortgage recording tax
Upcoming due dates
- Employer's quarterly MCTMT return
- Employer's quarterly combined withholding, wage reporting, and unemployment insurance return
Sales tax return for monthly filers