OKLAHOMA CITY — In an emergency meeting, all three commissioners of the Oklahoma Tax Commission (OTC) voted to extend the deadline to pay Oklahoma income taxes from April 15, 2020, to July 15, 2020. The move came after the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) changed the deadline to pay federal income taxes from April 15 to July 15. The filing deadline has not changed.
In an OTC news release, Charles Prater, CPA, OTC chairman, stated, “We are following IRS guidelines and want to remind Oklahomans that due dates for other tax types, including sales and withholding taxes, remain the same.”
The IRS and OTC allow all individual and other non-corporate tax filers to defer up to $1 million of income tax payments due April 15, 2020, to July 15, 2020, without penalties or interest. Corporate taxpayers can defer up to $10 million of income tax payments.
While the decision to extend the payment deadline may be a relief for many, it’s not as impactful without an extension to file, according to many experts.
Joshua Jenson, CPA, managing partner of Jenson & Company CPAs, P.C. in Edmond, said, “Typically anyone owing 2019 taxes would need to pay those taxes on or before April 15, 2020, to avoid penalties and interest, which start to accrue April 16, 2020. Extending the payment deadline does nothing to change the need to file returns by April 15, 2020, it simply means no penalties or interest will be assessed until July 16, 2020.”
Jenson said he is working to encoure leaders and, specifically, Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin, to extend the filing deadline as well.
“What I would like to see is the initial filing deadline moved to July 15, 2020, and the payment deadline moved to Oct. 15, 2020, which is also the extended due date for individual returns,” Jenson explained. “The main reason for this would be to allow CPA firms to have time to actually prepare tax returns.”
Jenson, who has a small staff home sick and is himself not feeling well, added, “I have the best clients ever, and all are expecting their returns done by April 15 because that’s normally when we complete their returns. If the filing deadline moved, all of them would be fine in allowing the returns to be completed by the new deadline. Furthermore, clients don’t like to learn an extension is being filed for their tax return.
“The IRS has left a multi-generational concern with taxpayers that by filing an extension it will lead to a flag, audit or IRS questions, which we know at this point is urban legend, but just casually stating ‘an extension can just be filed’ provides zero relief to CPAs in any way shape or form.”
He continued, “Again, it is simply ridiculous that when everything is shutting down, forced or elected, CPAs are expected to continue on without regard for their well-being or their staff’s. It is massively unfair, and I dare say rude.
“It just blows my mind the April 15 filing deadline is not being adjusted when literally everything is shutting down across America.”