Tax Relief for Hurricane Irene Victims; Additional Counties Added

Date: September 9, 2011

Gov. Bev Perdue today expanded tax relief to 24 more counties affected by Hurricane Irene, a step that will help businesses and individuals in those counties rebound from the storm's destruction.

"We are delivering every bit of assistance we can, as quickly as we can," Gov. Perdue said. "Families need to get back in their homes, and businesses need to reopen."

The counties granted relief today are: Bertie, Brunswick, Camden, Chowan, Currituck, Duplin, Edgecombe, Gates, Greene, Hertford, Johnston, Jones, Martin, Nash, New Hanover, Northampton, Onslow, Pasquotank, Perquimans, Pitt, Vance, Warren, Washington and Wilson also qualify.

Last week Gov. Perdue ordered the same tax relief for: Beaufort, Carteret, Craven, Dare, Halifax, Hyde, Lenoir, Pamlico and Tyrrell counties.

The relief is similar to that granted by the federal IRS and includes the waiver of late filing and payment penalties for businesses or individuals that had a filing and/or payment requirement for any North Carolina tax due on or after August 25, and on or before October 31, as long as the return is filed and the tax paid by October 31, 2011.

To make sure penalties are not assessed, taxpayers should include Form NC-5500 with the late payment or return.  The form is available at all Department of Revenue offices and at our website.  On the form, taxpayers should check the block for 'natural disaster' and fill in all the required information.  If a form is not sent along with the payment or return, the Form NC-5500 can be completed later if the taxpayer is assessed a penalty. 

In addition, NCDOR will suspend forced collection actions, including the issuance of garnishments, tax warrants and certificates of tax liabilities, for taxpayers in the declared disaster until October 31, 2011.  If a taxpayer in these areas receives a notice for the covered time period, they should contact the Department at 1-877-252-3252.

Taxpayers located in those counties declared federal disaster areas may also elect to claim a disaster-related casualty loss on either their 2010 or 2011 state income tax returns.  Taxpayers claiming the loss on an original or amended return should write "Hurricane Irene" in black ink at the top left of the form, so the return can be readily identified for special handling. The loss must be deducted on the state income tax return in the same year it is deducted for federal income tax purposes.

If more counties are designated federal disaster areas, taxpayers in those areas will also qualify for NCDOR's storm relief.

For information about federal tax relief, please visit the IRS website at www.irs.gov.

If taxpayers have any questions they should call the Department's Taxpayer Assistance Division at 1-877-252-3052, or visit our website.


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