HSC Guide to Hurricane Ian Disaster Relief
Our thoughts are with everyone who has been impacted by Hurricane Ian. We hope that you and your loved ones remain safe during this difficult time. While the recovery process will take time, federal and state governments have announced various measures of disaster relief to assist as we rebuild our communities.
The President has declared a federal disaster area for all counties throughout the states of Florida, North Carolina, and South Carolina due to the storm. Taxpayers who live or have a business in the disaster area will qualify for certain tax relief. Additionally, tax relief related to tax deadlines and payments is extended to taxpayer’s located outside of Florida who have tax preparers located within the state.
Tax Filing Deadlines Extended for Taxpayers Impacted by Disaster
The IRS extended certain deadlines falling on or after September 23, 2022, and on or before February 15, 2023, to February 15, 2023. This extension includes filing for most returns, including:
- Individual, corporate, estate and trust income tax returns
- Partnership and S corporation income tax returns
- Estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer tax returns
- Form 5500 series returns
- Annual information returns of tax-exempt organizations, and employment and certain excise tax returns
FinCEN has also announced an extension of the deadline to file the 2021 Form 114, Foreign Bank Account Reporting (FBAR). Affected taxpayers will now have until February 15, 2023 to file their FBAR for 2021.
The State of Florida has confirmed it will follow the federal deadline relief for corporate tax filers with filings and payments due. Eligible taxpayers that file Florida corporate income tax returns, as well as Florida corporate income tax installment payments, with original due dates or extended due dates falling on or after September 23, 2022 and before March 2, 2023 will now have a due date of March 2, 2023. This tax relief is applicable to affected businesses anywhere in Florida.
Tax Payment Deadlines Extended for Taxpayers Impacted by Disaster
Also, the relief includes extra time to make tax payments. This includes estimated tax payments due on or after September 23, 2022, and before February 15, 2023. The IRS will excuse late penalties for employment and excise tax deposits due on or after September 23, 2022, and before October 10, 2022. However, the taxpayer must make the deposits before October 10, 2022.
Relief for Out of State Taxpayers with Tax Preparers Located in Disaster Areas
Taxpayers outside of Florida, North Carolina, or South Carolina with preparers located in the state are also eligible for deadline and payment relief. Here at HSC, we have identified eligible taxpayers among the out of state clients we serve and have submitted a bulk request to the IRS to extend this relief. If you are not a client of HSC and reside outside of the disaster areas, you should contact your tax advisor to determine your eligibility for relief or contact the IRS at (866)562-5227 to request relief. For taxpayers located within the affected states, the eligibility is automatic.
Claiming Casualty Losses for Tax Benefits
Affected taxpayers can claim disaster-related casualty losses on their federal income tax return. Taxpayers may get relief by claiming their losses on their 2021 or 2022 return. Individuals may deduct personal property losses not covered by insurance or other reimbursements. The IRS has indicated that they will be expediting refund processing for taxpayers claiming these losses.
Navigating the disaster loss rules can be challenging. It is important to keep record of your insurance claims and receipts for any out-of-pocket expense that may qualify. Please contact your HSC advisor to discuss any questions you have regarding claiming a loss.
Dealing with Missing Records
The IRS will provide affected taxpayers with copies of prior year returns without charge. To get this expedited service, taxpayers should:
- add the disaster designation at the top of Form 4506, Request for a Copy of Tax Return, or Form 4506-T, Request for Transcript of Tax Return;
- and submit it to the IRS as directed in the instructions to the form.
Individual taxpayers may also request transcripts of their tax account by visiting the IRS website at https://www.irs.gov/individuals/get-transcript. This online service is free to taxpayers but will require account registration. You may also call toll-free at (800)908-9946 and follow the prompts in the recorded message to request a transcript.
Our HSC team members are here to help you in dealing with missing or lost tax documents. We can obtain authorization and communicate with the IRS to access your records electronically through our tax practitioner services. Please contact your HSC advisor if you need further assistance in gathering your tax information after the storm.
Disaster Assistance Through FEMA & SBA
Individual disaster assistance may be available through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to those who have suffered significant loss due to Hurricane Ian. Visit the FEMA disaster assistance website at https://www.disasterassistance.gov/ to determine eligibility for your area and apply online.
Homeowners, renters, and businesses located in disaster areas may qualify for low-interest, long-term disaster relief loans for losses not fully covered by insurance or other means. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) offers affordable financial help to businesses and private non-profit organizations in declared disaster areas.
Homeowners or renters who want to apply for SBA assistance, must first apply with FEMA. You may apply to FEMA on DisasterAssistance.gov or by phone via FEMA Disaster Assistance Helpline:
- 1-800-621-3362 (711 available)
- If you use a video relay service, captioned phone, or other communication service, give FEMA the number for that service.
You may also apply online via the SBA website at https://disasterloanassistance.sba.gov/ela/s/. For personal assistance in applying for assistance, please contact a disaster recovery center near you. To locate a disaster recovery center, visit https://egateway.fema.gov/ESF6/DRCLocator.
In Lee County, the Disaster Recovery Center has been set up at the following location:
Lakes Regional Library 15290 Bass Road Fort Myers, FL 33919
Hours of operation: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. 7 days a week.
Disaster Recovery Centers provide disaster information from Florida state agencies, FEMA, and the U.S. Small Business Administration. You can get help applying for federal assistance, learn about the types of assistance available, learn about the appeals process and get updates on applications.
Florida Unemployment Assistance
Governor Ron DeSantis has recently announced the waiver of several requirements for Floridians impacted by Hurricane Ian when seeking unemployment assistance. Affected individuals will temporarily be able to bypass the work search reporting, waiting period, and Employ Florida registration requirement for re-employment assistance claims.
FEMA is also providing Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) to businesses and residents of FEMA disaster areas whose employment or self-employment was interrupted due to Hurricane Ian and are otherwise not eligible for the usual state or federal assistance.
Further information on filing a claim may be found by visiting: https://www.floridajobs.org/Reemployment-Assistance-Service-Center/reemployment-assistance/claimants/disaster-unemployment-assistance
If you are looking for in person assistance with filing your unemployment claim you may also visit a Disaster Recovery Center.
The HSC Team is here to help!
Remember, HSC is here to help you through the recovery process. Please contact your HSC advisor or point of contact if you have any questions or need assistance in navigating these matters. Again, we will get through this together!