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We Still Owe Taxes, Even Though IRS and Fed’l Gov’t Shut Down

IRS is still awaiting late ’12 taxes

Erin E. Arvedlund Published Thursday, October 3, 2013 (Philly Inquirer sub wall)

Even though much of the federal government shut down Tuesday, will individual taxpayers filing late returns for 2012 still need to file by Oct. 15? The answer, sadly, is yes.

We checked in with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and found some scary answers to your questions. Taxpayers and accountants should assume that the extended due date for individual returns is Oct. 15 until the IRS otherwise provides guidance, according to the AICPA.Question: Will the IRS provide an expedited or automatic abatement of penalties for late-filed tax returns?

Answer: No. The IRS has no plans to grant expedited or automatic abatements of penalties for late-filed returns due to a government shutdown.

Q: For e-filers, will the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System continue to operate as normal during the government shutdown?

A: Yes, the IRS will take your filing and your money online. It has indicated that the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS) will continue to operate as normal during the government shutdown. As a precaution, the AICPA recommends that you print the confirmation page for any payments you make through the system.

Q: Will the practitioner hotline remain open during the government shutdown?

A: No, according to the IRS’s contingency plan, services such as responding to taxpayer questions will cease during any shutdown. Once government operations resume, the IRS may consider extended hours and additional staff to assist tax practitioners through Oct. 15.

Q: Will taxpayer assistance centers be open during the government shutdown?

A: No, they will be closed.

Q: How will the shutdown affect the timing of taxpayer refunds?

A: The IRS will not issue any refunds during a government shutdown. In addition, the “Where’s my refund” service will cease during the shutdown.

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