Page last updated May 8, 2020 – 5:30 p.m.
The Department of Revenue’s offices and customer service call center are currently closed as the commonwealth takes steps to help slow the spread of COVID-19 in Pennsylvania.
As an alternative, the department is encouraging taxpayers to use its Online Customer Service Center, available at revenue-pa.custhelp.com. You can use this resource to electronically submit a question to a department representative. The department representative will be able to respond through a secure, electronic process that is similar to receiving an email. Additionally, the Online Customer Service Center includes thousands of answers to common tax-related questions.
The department is also encouraging taxpayers to use its Schedule a Call service. Use this service to select a date and time that works for your schedule to receive a call from the Department of Revenue. Once a selection is made, the requested call will be assigned to a representative from the department’s Customer Experience Center. If you are using the Schedule a Call service, please keep in mind that your requested phone call may be made within a few minutes of your scheduled time. Department representatives will work as quickly as possible to maintain the schedule, but the volume of requests may be a factor.
Taxpayers in need of assistance may also call or email the Revenue District Office that is closest to them.
Relief for Taxpayers During COVID-19 Pandemic
To help taxpayers facing financial challenges resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue is providing taxpayers with increased flexibility, additional time to meet tax obligations, and relief from a number of compliance actions. The goal is to help Pennsylvania taxpayers and citizens during this unprecedented health crisis.
Pennsylvania Extends Personal Income Tax Return Filing Deadline to July 15, 2020
The Department of Revenue announced the deadline for taxpayers to file their 2019 Pennsylvania personal income tax returns is extended to July 15, 2020. This means taxpayers will have an additional 90 days to file from the original deadline of April 15. The Internal Revenue Service also extended the federal filing deadline to July 15, 2020.
The Department of Revenue will also waive penalties and interest on 2019 personal income tax payments through the new deadline of July 15, 2020. This extension applies to both final 2019 tax returns and payments, and estimated payments for the first and second quarters of 2020.
Cancelling Scheduled Electronic Personal Income Tax Payments
Now that the deadline for filing personal income tax payments has been extended to July 15, 2020, many taxpayers are likely wondering whether they can cancel an electronic tax payment that they scheduled to be made prior to the original payment deadline of April 15, 2020. Here is what you should know:
- The taxpayer will only be able to cancel their annual or estimated personal income tax payment by contacting the Department of Revenue at least two business days prior to the payment date.
- To request an ACH payment cancellation, a request must be submitted by email to email@example.com, or faxed to 717-772-9310. The request must include the taxpayer’s name, Social Security number, payment date, and payment amount to be cancelled.
- The department does not have the authority to cancel payment dates without consent from the taxpayer. Additionally, the department does not have the ability to reschedule the taxpayer’s payment. The taxpayer will need to reschedule the payment for another date once the cancellation is processed.
- For taxpayers who scheduled their electronic payments for April 15, 2020, the department is requesting that taxpayers cancel their payments by close of business on Friday, April 10 to ensure there is enough time to process cancellation requests.
- For other questions, taxpayers are encouraged to contact the department through its Online Customer Service Center. This is a secure system that allows taxpayers to correspond directly with a department representative.
Federal Stimulus Checks Not Subject to PA Taxes
The stimulus checks, otherwise known as economic impact payments, being distributed by the federal government are not subject to Pennsylvania personal income tax. The payment is considered a rebate that is non-taxable in Pennsylvania. The payments are being distributed as part of the federal economic stimulus legislation that was signed into law in March in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The U.S. Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service announced the payments will be distributed automatically, with no action required for most people. However, some seniors and others who typically do not file returns will need to submit a simple tax return to receive the stimulus payment.
Read the IRS press release, Economic Impact Payments: What You Need to Know, for further information. The IRS also said it would post additional information on IRS.gov/coronavirus as it becomes available.
Extension of Filing Deadline Applies to Trusts/Estates, Partnerships and S Corporations
Governor Tom Wolf recently signed into law Act 10 of 2020, which extends the due date of certain personal income tax returns and payments, as well as waiving certain other income tax dates. The Department of Revenue also announced it is extending the due date for corporations with tax returns due in May to August 14, 2020.
Here is additional guidance (applies to Calendar Year only):
|Partnerships||1065||PA 20S/PA-65||March 15||March 15||April 15||July 15|
|S Corporations||1120S||PA-20S/PA-65||March 15||March 15||April 15||July 15|
|Individuals||1040||PA-40||April 15||July 15||April 15||July 15|
|Trusts/Estates||1041||PA-41||April 15||July 15||April 15||July 15|
|Corporations||1120||RCT-101||April 15||July 15||May 15||August 14|
Due Dates Extended for 2020 Annual Corporate Net Income Tax Returns and Payments
Pennsylvania corporate taxpayers who had annual corporate net income tax returns and payments due in April, May, June or July of 2020 now have until August 14, 2020 to file their returns and make their final payments.
This extension is being made after the IRS announced in March that certain taxpayers generally had until July 15, 2020 to file and pay federal income taxes originally due on April 15, 2020. The IRS later released additional guidance that said the extension applied to all taxpayers who had filing or payment deadlines falling between April 1, 2020 and July 15, 2020. By law, the due dates for Pennsylvania annual corporate net income tax payments are 30 days after the federal due dates.
The Department of Revenue also recently announced it extended the due date for corporations with tax returns due in May to August 14, 2020. That means the new due date for corporate filers who take an extension to file their returns is now February 16, 2021. As usual, this additional six-month extension applies to filing the tax return, not to making a payment.
Below is additional guidance:
|Payments – RCT-101||Original Due Date||New Due Date|
|Annual Payment||April 15, 2020||August 14, 2020|
|Annual Payment||May 15, 2020||August 14, 2020|
|Annual Payment||June 15, 2020||August 14, 2020|
|Annual Payment||July 15, 2020||August 14, 2020|
|Corporations||Annual Returns||Original Due Date||New Due Date||Original Extension Date||New Extension Due Date|
|Fiscal Year ending 11/30/2019||RCT-101||April 15, 2020||August 14, 2020||October 15, 2020||February 16, 2021|
|Calendar Year 2019||RCT-101||May 15, 2020||August 14, 2020||November 16, 2020||February 16, 2021|
|Fiscal Year ending 1/31/2020||RCT-101||June 15, 2020||August 14, 2020||December 15, 2020||February 16, 2021|
|Fiscal Year ending 2/29/2020||RCT-101||July 15, 2020||August 14, 2020||January 15, 2021||February 16, 2021|
Note: No other corporate tax due dates or payments are extended.
Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program Application Deadline Extended to End of Year
The deadline for older adults and Pennsylvania residents with disabilities to apply for rebates on rent and property taxes paid in 2019 has been extended from June 30 to Dec. 31, 2020.
Stimulus Checks Not Considered Income For Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program
The stimulus checks, otherwise known as economic impact payments, being distributed by the federal government in response to the COVID-19 pandemic will not be considered as income for applicants of the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program. The payment is considered a rebate that Pennsylvanians should not include on the Property Tax or Rent Rebate Claim form (PA-1000).
The Department of Revenue announced the deadline for older adults and Pennsylvania residents with disabilities to apply for rebates on rent and property taxes paid in 2019 has been extended from June 30 to Dec. 31, 2020.
Business Tax License and Certifications Extension Notice
The Department of Revenue is extending all business tax licenses and certifications that are set to expire until further communication is received from the department.
This extension applies to:
- Sales, Use and Hotel Occupancy tax licenses
- Public Transportation Assistance (PTA) Fund taxes and fees
- Small Games of Chance Manufacturer Certificates
- Small Games of Chance Distributor Licenses
- Sales Tax Exemption Certificates
- If you need documentation of the sales tax exemption extension, please use the department’s Online Customer Service Center to submit a question. If your religious organization’s sales tax exemption certificate is due to expire on March 31, 2020, the Department of Revenue is issuing an extension letter. If documentation is needed, religious organizations are encouraged to contact their parent institutions to obtain the extension letter.
For new account registrations needing a copy of the license and for copies of documents previously issued by the department, taxpayers may opt in to receive electronic correspondence from e-TIDES, the department’s online system for businesses. The exact steps needed to access the new electronic correspondence functionality in the e-TIDES Document Center vary slightly based on your current access.
To learn more, visit the Get Assistance section in e-TIDES and select “Document Center Instructions” then “Electronic Correspondence” for step-by-step setup instructions. Visit e-TIDES Document Center for further information on electronic correspondence and a short video on its features.
Waiver of In-Person Service of Legal Action Requirement
Pursuant to PA.R.Civ.P. 402(b), the Office of General Counsel has agreed to waive the in-person service requirement on legal actions and accept service via email or mail during the COVID-19 outbreak. For matters which are to be served physically, each state agency has a designee that may be contacted. For Department of Revenue matters, please contact Teri Rhoades via email or at 717-346-4650.
Notice on Extension of Tobacco Product Dealer Licenses
As a result of Department of Revenue’s offices and customer service call center being closed, there are delays in the processing of new tobacco licenses, as well as remaining renewals of licenses for the 2020/2021 licensing term. In light of this development, the Department of Revenue is extending all tobacco products dealer licenses that were set to expire February 29, 2020, until further communication is received from the department.
This extension applies to all tobacco product dealer licenses, and this notice serves as department authorization for manufacturers, cigarette stamping agents, wholesalers, retailers and vending licensees that cigarette and other tobacco product purchases may be made using a 2019/2020 license until further communication is received from the department.
Waiver of Penalties on Accelerated Sales Tax Prepayments
Businesses that collect Pennsylvania sales tax will not have to make Accelerated Sales Tax (AST) prepayments in April, May or June, the Department of Revenue has announced. That means businesses that normally have a monthly prepayment requirement will not be charged penalties for missing the prepayment deadline during this three-month period.
Under this new scenario, the department is asking businesses to simply remit the sales tax that they collected during the prior month. The due dates to remit sales tax will be April 20, May 20 and June 22, which follows the standard due dates for monthly filers who have no prepayment requirement.
Visit the Department of Revenue’s page on Accelerated Sales Tax Prepayments for more information on how to calculate your prepayments.
All businesses are encouraged to remit online using e-TIDES, the department’s online tax system for businesses. Find the REV-819 on the department’s website for a schedule of return and prepayment due dates. You can also visit the department’s Online Customer Service Center to find answers to common tax questions or submit a question to the department.
Inheritance Tax Returns & Payments
The Department of Revenue is aware that taxpayers have been unable to meet their inheritance tax filing and payment obligations. To address these concerns, the department is asking County Register of Wills offices to implement the following procedures when their operations resume:
- If a taxpayer is filing a return or making a payment and indicates that either was due during the timeframe that offices were closed, please place a date received as of March 12, 2020, on the return and the receipt.
- In addition, the department is making system modifications to not apply penalties for payments received late, that otherwise would have been timely during office closures
Additionally, the Department of Revenue is aware that several factors have resulted in taxpayers being unable to meet the three-calendar month deadline to receive the inheritance tax five percent discount. Currently, there is no extension for inheritance tax discounts. Taxpayers must make the payment within the time period in order to receive the discount. By counties following the procedures noted above, the receipt dates will determine the taxpayer’s discount eligibility.
At this time, mailing of all inheritance tax notices have been ceased temporarily. Mailing of all notices will resume when offices reopen.
Information on Tax Appeals
There will be additional time in certain cases for taxpayers who wish to appeal a tax assessment issued by the Department of Revenue or file a petition for a tax refund with the Board of Appeals. A petition will be accepted as timely filed if it is filed by the later of the following dates:
- 30 days after the reopening of the Board of Appeals offices; or
- The original appeal deadline.
Please know that If the appeal deadline fell on a date prior to the closure of commonwealth offices (March 16, 2020), the original appeal deadline is still applicable. In other words, in these cases petitions will be considered as timely filed if they are filed by the last day of the appeal period. Additionally, the Board of Appeals will accept any submission of requested documentation as long as it is received within 30 days after the Board of Appeals offices reopen.
In addition, the Board of Appeals will be operating in a limited capacity until further notice in order to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Read Board of Appeals Operations During COVID-19 Pandemic (PDF) for further information.
Visit the Board of Appeals’ Online Petition Center for further information on tax appeals.
Information on Assessments and Notices
The Department of Revenue continues to process electronically filed tax returns and payments while government operations are shut down due to the COVID-19 outbreak. If you received a notice or assessment from the department that requires a response by a specific date, please know that the deadline to respond is suspended temporarily. That temporary suspension will be lifted once the Department of Revenue’s offices have reopened. Further guidance will be posted on the Revenue website as it becomes available.
Waiver for Signature on Corporate Paper Tax Returns
The Department of Revenue is temporarily waiving the requirement for corporate officers to physically sign and date certain corporate tax returns with a wet signature. This waiver applies to tax returns that cannot be submitted to the department electronically. Examples are the returns due for Gross Premiums Tax and Mutual Thrift Institutions Tax.
This waiver will be in place during the emergency disaster declaration signed by Gov. Wolf in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The emergency disaster declaration was signed on March 6, 2020.
In place of the corporate officer signature, the person who prepares the return should write in “COVID-19” on the signature line. This will serve as a temporary solution to authenticate the filing of the return if the corporate officer is unable to sign and date the return due to the pandemic.
IFTA/MCRT Requirements Temporarily Waived
Certain requirements concerning the International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) and Motor Carrier Road Tax (MCRT) are temporarily waived for all commercial carriers and vehicles traveling into or within Pennsylvania. This waiver applies to decals, temporary permits and trip permits.
This temporary waiver comes after Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf issued a Proclamation of Disaster Emergency. It is necessary to waive any statutory provisions that may slow, limit or otherwise hinder the timely and efficient transportation by commercial vehicles during the COVID-19 emergency.
The temporary waiver remains in effect from March 19, 2020 until it is determined by Gov. Wolf that the emergency no longer exists, or for 30 days, whichever occurs later.
Due Date Extended For First Quarter IFTA Tax Reports
The due date for taxpayers to file the first quarter 2020 International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) tax report is extended from April 30, 2020 to June 1, 2020. The Department of Revenue will not charge any penalty or interest for first quarter 2020 IFTA reports if they are filed on or before June 1, 2020.
The department is advising taxpayers to avoid combining miles traveled and gallons purchased for separate reporting periods into one report. Only miles traveled and gallons purchased from January 1, 2020 through March 31, 2020 should be reported on the first quarter IFTA report.
Deadline Extended to Redeem Unclaimed Tickets from PA Horse Races
Anyone holding an unclaimed winning ticket from a horse race held in Pennsylvania during 2019 will have more time to claim their winning ticket. The deadline has been extended to May 31, 2020 for tickets purchased during 2019.
Under the original deadline, unclaimed winning tickets from 2019 would have expired on March 31, 2020. The deadline has been extended due to the fact that racetracks in Pennsylvania have been closed to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Find Answers to FAQs Related to COVID-19
The Department of Revenue is developing responses for taxpayers and tax professionals who have specific questions related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Please visit the department’s Online Customer Service Center to look through these responses. You can also use the Online Customer Service Center to submit a specific question directly to a representative from the department.