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Federal Tax Return Filing Relief for Victims of Disasters

What happens when a tax deadline falls right around the time of a natural disaster? The IRS doesn't expect you to scramble to make the filing deadline anyway, does it? What if your tax records are destroyed? What if you owe taxes and your funds have gone to temporarily relocate your family?

Thankfully, the IRS provides tax relief for victims of federally declared disasters. If you reside in a state that has been struck by a hurricane, flood, wildfire, earthquake, or other disaster, you may qualify for special tax relief. IRS tax relief for disaster victims generally takes the form of extended deadlines to file your return. The IRS also frequently extends tax payment deadlines for disaster victims.

Tax Relief and Tax Deadline Extension Information for Tax Year 2016

Below are the most recent disasters that qualify for tax relief and tax deadline extensions: 

Tax Relief for California Wildfire Victims

The IRS extended the 2016 tax return and tax payment deadlines to January 31, 2018 for taxpayers living or working in the following areas of California: 

  • Butte,
  • Lake,
  • Mendocino, Napa,
  • Nevada, Sonoma
  • Yuba

This deadline also applies to taxpayers that filed an extension on or by April 18, 2017 (which expired on October 16) and taxpayers required to submit quarterly estimated tax payments by April 18.

Tax Relief for Hurricane Maria Flooding Victims

The IRS extended the 2016 tax return and tax payment deadlines to January 31, 2018 for taxpayers living or working in the following areas of these U.S. territories and states:

This deadline also applies to taxpayers that filed an extension on or by April 18, 2017 (which expired on October 16) and taxpayers required to submit quarterly estimated tax payments by April 18.

Tax Relief for Hurricane Irma Flooding Victims

The IRS extended the 2016 tax return and tax payment deadlines to January 31, 2018 for taxpayers living or working in the following areas of these U.S. territories and states:

  • U.S Virgin Islands: St. Croix, St. John, and St. Thomas
  • Puerto Rico: Municipalities of Adjuntas, Aguas Buenas, Barranquitas, Bayamón, Camuy, Carolina, Cataño, Ciales, Comerío, Culebra, Canóvanas, Dorado, Fajardo, Guaynabo, Gurabo, Hatillo, Jayuya, Juncos, Las Piedras, Loíza, Luquillo, Naguabo, Orocovis, Patillas, Quebradillas, Salinas, San Juan, Toa Baja, Utuado, Vega Baja, Vieques, and Yauco
  • Florida
  • Georgia

This deadline also applies to taxpayers that filed an extension on or by April 18, 2017 (which expired on October 16) and taxpayers required to submit quarterly estimated tax payments by April 18.

Tax Relief for Texas Storms and Hurricane Harvey Flooding Victims

The IRS extended the tax return and tax payment deadlines starting on August 23, 2017 to January 31, 2018 for taxpayers living or working in the following counties:

  • Aransas
  • Bee
  • Brazoria
  • Calhoun
  • Chambers
  • Fort Bend
  • Galveston
  • Goliad
  • Harris
  • Jackson
  • Kleberg
  • Liberty
  • Matagorda
  • Nueces
  • Refugio
  • San Patricio
  • Victoria
  • Wharton

This deadline also applies to taxpayers that filed an extension on or by April 18, 2017 (which expired on October 16) and taxpayers required to submit quarterly estimated tax payments by April 18.

Tax Relief for Michigan Storms and Flooding Victims

The IRS extended the tax return and tax payment deadlines starting on June 22, 2017 to October 31, 2017 for taxpayers living or working in the following counties:

  • Bay
  • Gladwin
  • Isabella
  • Minland 
  • Saginaw

This deadline also applies to taxpayers that filed an extension on or by April 18, 2017 (which expired on October 16) and taxpayers required to submit quarterly estimated tax payments by April 18.

How Do I Prepare My Tax Records for a Disaster?

The IRS recommends that in order to prepare for a possible disaster, you should make an electronic backup of all tax-related documents. It is best to store this electronic set of records in a different location than the originals.

When you prepare and efile your tax return on efile.com, you will have 24-hour, 7 days a week access to tax return copies

Start Tax Return

Can I Deduct Any Uninsured or Unreimbursed Disaster Related Losses from My Taxes?

You can claim them as tax deductions on the tax return for the year the loss occurred or the return for the prior year. 

Where Can I Find More Tax Relief and Tax Deadline Extension Information?

Find the most recent IRS disaster relief announcements on the IRS website by clicking the button below.

IRS Disaster Relief Announcements