Louisiana Tax Amnesty a Go
- Jun 26, 2013 | Gail Cole
The Act requires the Louisiana Department of Revenue (department) to create a tax amnesty program between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014, "for a period not to exceed two consecutive calendar months…. at the discretion of the secretary."
The amnesty applies to "all taxes administered by the department" due prior to January 1, 2014, with the exception of motor fuel taxes and "penalties for failure to submit information reports that are not based on an underpayment of tax."
In 2014, the Louisiana Department of Revenue will offer a one-month amnesty period. It will take place sometime between July 1 and December 31, 2014 and will allow a 15% penalty waiver but no interest waiver.
In 2015, the department will offer an amnesty period of at least one month. It will allow a 10% penalty waiver.
Eligible for Amnesty
- Taxes due prior to January 1, 2014, for which the department has issued an individual or a business a proposed assessment, notice of assess,met, bill, notice, or demand for payment on or after July 1, 2001, and before May 31, 2013; or
- Taxes due on or after July 1, 2001 and before January 1, 2013; or
- Certain taxes "for which the taxpayer and the department have entered into an agreement to interrupt the running of prescription … and said agreement suspends the running of prescription until December 31, 2014;" or
- Taxes due on or before July 1, 2001, if the taxpayer was ineligible for an earlier amnesty program due to having a matter in civil litigation."
In order to participate in the tax amnesty program, taxpayers must relinquish "the right to protest or initiate an administrative or judicial proceeding…." That doesn't mean taxpayers can't protest other taxes at other times: "The agreement shall only apply to the specific tax and the tax period for which amnesty is granted."
Amnesty is only available for "eligible taxes to eligible taxpayers who apply for amnesty during the amnesty period…." All necessary forms must be appropriately completed, and any applicable taxes, fees, costs and half of the interest must be paid upon filing the amnesty application. In addition, "[t]he secretary reserves the right to require taxpayers to file tax returns with the amnesty application."
Once the amnesty is approved, the remaining interest and all of the penalties associated with the tax amnesty period will be waived.
Tax amnesty periods benefit both taxpayers and the state. Taxpayers have penalties, which can be quite high, waived and their consciences cleared. The state receives revenue.
Dates for the three tax amnesty periods have not yet been set.
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