"We encourage those Americans who can file their taxes to continue to file their taxes on April 15, because for many Americans, you will get tax refunds and we don't want you to lose out on those tax refunds," the Treasury secretary said

By Diane Herbst
March 20, 2020 05:05 PM

Update: On Friday, government officials said the IRS was extending the federal income tax filing deadline from April 15 to July 15. Individual state tax filing deadlines may still apply, though it is believed various states will also grant extensions amid the disruption from the coronavirus.

The original article, published on Wednesday, is below.

As part of its response to the novel coronavirus pandemic, the Treasury Department announced this week that taxpayers have an extra 90 days to pay taxes to the IRS on income of as much as $1 million.

During the three-month deferral period, taxpayers won’t be subject to interest and penalties, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told reporters on Tuesday. 

Still, he advised filing federal returns by April 15, the usual day that people must file their 2019 tax returns and pay any tax monies due.

“We encourage those Americans who can file their taxes to continue to file their taxes on April 15, because for many Americans, you will get tax refunds and we don’t want you to lose out on those tax refunds,” Mnuchin said. “We want you to make sure you get them.” 

The usual process for filing a tax extension remains unchanged.

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Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin
Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc/Getty

The new grace period covers many pass-through entities and small businesses, Mnuchin said, noting that corporations also have an extra 90 days to pay up to $10 million due in taxes.

The three-month grace period only applies to federal taxes. Taxpayers should also check with their individual states about any additional changes amid the widespread delays caused by the new coronavirus, which has sickened hundreds of thousands of people worldwide.

Some states have already granted additional time in response to the coronavirus. 

In California, there is a 60-day grace period for those individuals and businesses affected by the virus. 

And Ohio, Michigan, Connecticut, Oregon and Colorado taxpayers have the same IRS grace period of 90 days to pay state taxes, according to the The American Institute of CPAs, which is developing a list of individual states’ tax requirements. 

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDCWHO, and local public health departments and visit our coronavirus hub.

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