Top Senate Republican urges IRS to consider extending filing deadline

Top Senate Republican urges IRS to consider extending filing deadline

Sen. Mike CrapoMichael (Mike) Dean CrapoFundraising spat points to Trump-GOP fissures Trump announces new tranche of endorsements Biden convenes bipartisan meeting on cancer research MORE (Idaho), the top Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, on Wednesday urged the IRS to “strongly consider” extending the tax-filing deadline, becoming the latest lawmaker to issue such a call.

“The various coronavirus relief programs created over the last year, including the bill signed into law just last week, have resulted in a large amount of extra paperwork for taxpayers this year and have required tax preparation firms to constantly update their systems,” Crapo said in a statement.

“The IRS should strongly consider extending the filing deadline, giving taxpayers and businesses more certainty and time to receive accurate guidance and file returns properly.”

The deadline for individuals to file their 2020 federal tax returns is April 15 in most states. Residents of Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana have until June 15 because of winter storms. Others who need more time can request six-month extensions.

Last year, the IRS extended the filing deadline from April 15 to July 15 because of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Many lawmakers and tax preparers are pushing the agency to issue a similar extension this year because pandemic-related challenges persist. They also are arguing that taxpayers have a lot of questions about how to file their returns in light of the new coronavirus relief law, in particular because of a provision that makes tax-free the first $10,200 in unemployment benefits people received last year.

Crapo joins a growing list of lawmakers who want the IRS to consider extending the filing deadline. The effort has primarily come from the House side. On Tuesday, more than 100 House members sent a letter to the Treasury Department and the IRS urging them to issue an extension.

IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig is scheduled to testify before the House Ways and Means Committee on Thursday. Rettig said at a House Appropriations subcommittee hearing last month that the agency didn’t have any plans at that time to extend the deadline.