By Terry Barrett, CPA, Tax Senior Manager | State and Local Tax Team
Local Tax Amnesty and Other Tax Assistance Approved for Individuals and Businesses in the City of Richmond and Surrounding Virginia Counties
The City of Richmond recently approved ordinances authorizing tax amnesty programs that will assist individuals and businesses in these challenging times by providing additional time to pay certain taxes without the imposition of penalties and interest. Surrounding localities have also approved similar measures. These are summarized below.
City of Richmond
Tax Amnesty Program – Certain Local Taxes
The Richmond City Council recently approved ordinances establishing a tax amnesty program for certain local taxes as follows:
- Real Estate and Tangible Personal Property Taxes
These taxes normally are due June 15; however, by Ordinance 2020-109 the City Council will now allow property owners to pay their real estate and personal property taxes by August 14, 2020, without incurring any interest or penalties. All property owners must do to receive the waiver of penalties and interest is to pay the full amount of taxes due by August 14, 2020. No other specific action is required. It is noteworthy that property owners currently participating in the City Assessor’s Tax Credit for Certain Rehabilitated, Replaced or New Structures Program may not take advantage of the delayed due date. Rather they must pay all their 2020 Tax Year real estate taxes by June 30, 2020, in order to receive the tax credit.
- Local Meals, Admissions, and Lodging Taxes
Pursuant to Ordinance 2020-096, the City Council has approved the waiver of interest and penalties for meals, admissions, and lodging that are delinquent beginning March 21, 2020, through June 23, 2020, (thus for returns and taxes due March through June 2020) provided the returns are timely filed each month and payment for such taxes is made on or before June 30, 2020. In lieu of making full payment of the taxes, taxpayers may entered into a payment plan meeting certain requirements established by the City. To be eligible for the amnesty program, a business must have submitted monthly tax returns for the months of January 2020 through April 2020 by May 20, 2020.
The City is also offering amnesty for parking penalties as reported in our article, Additional Help for Richmond Area Residents and Businesses in Response to COVID-19.
Payment Plans for Certain Taxes
In April, Chesterfield County announced it is allowing payment plans for personal property taxes and real estate taxes due June 5, 2020. Those interested in pursuing such plans must apply online through the Treasurer’s office, or by calling the Treasurer’s office. It is important to note, however, that participating in a payment plan does not prevent additional interest and fees from accruing on a taxpayer’s account.
Local Lodging Taxes – Waiver of Penalties and Interest
The Hanover County Board of Supervisors recently voted to waive penalties and interest on transient occupancy taxes and utilities for a 60-day period.
Waiver of Penalties and Interest and Delayed Payments of Certain Taxes
The County is waiving penalties and interest on payments for business and individual personal property tax, machinery and tools tax, commercial real estate taxes, and vehicle license payments if made after the normal June 5th due date but by August 5, 2020. In addition, the County is waiving late penalty and interest on transient occupancy and meals tax payments due between March 20 and August 20 if such payments are made by August 20, 2020.
The Goochland County Board of Supervisors approved several measure at its April 7, 2020, to assist the County’s business community. These include, but are not limited to:
- Delay in Local Business Tax Bills
A delay in the billing of 2020 machinery and tools and business personal property tax until December 5, 2020. Normally, the taxes are billed in two parts, with first half in May and the second half in December. However, this year, all of those taxes will be due on December 5, 2020.
- Delay in Penalty/Interest on Real Estate and Personal Property Tax Payments
While real estate and personal property taxes are due on June 5, 2020, the Board approved a 30 day delay in the imposition of interest and penalties due to late payments.
About the Author
The information contained within this article is provided for informational purposes only and is current as of the date published. Online readers are advised not to act upon this information without seeking the service of a professional accountant, as this article is not a substitute for obtaining accounting, tax, or financial advice from a professional accountant.