It’s not everyday the state government decides to cut its citizens a break. State citizens, particularly those in the Washington DC Metro area know what it’s like to feel the brunt of taxes. As even as their own financial positions have sometimes faltered throughout the years. Thanks to legislation passed by state lawmakers earlier this year, the Maryland Tax Amnesty Program was revived. And it allows the state to waive all civil penalties, and 50% of accrued interests. It offers some form of relief for state taxes.
The Amnesty program is running from September 1st to October 30th. There are some exceptions (such as the case of tax fraud). This program should offer some form of relief for thousands of taxpayers.
No matter how you look at it, this is an opportunity anyone facing past due taxes cannot afford to miss. It is an excellent chance to avoid paying more than you might otherwise pay. And it should hasten you to action; after all, the psychological impulse that says ‘I’ve already waited. I may as well wait longer at this point,’ has been completely erased. It is quite possible that you may have procrastinated in the past. If so, now is your chance for a sense of redemption—as well as relief.
Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot said it best. “Tax Amnesty is a limited and rare opportunity for tax delinquents to settle any outstanding liabilities, find debt relief. It’s vital for all Marylanders to do the right thing. And pay their taxes which support important public services benefiting everyone in our great state.”
Granted, the moral imperative implied by Franchot may be questionable. Or at least it may ring hallow, depending on who it is directed towards. However, there is no doubt. And purely, as a matter of pragmatism, benefiting from this program should be attractive to anyone. That is, those who find themselves still owing taxes to the State.
Of course, there are caveats and nuances. For instance, citizens who were granted amnesty during any of the years between 1999 and 2004 are not going to be eligible. Unfortunately they are disqualified from the Maryland Tax Amnesty Program. Clearly, the law was written to address any abuse. The notion that some might hope to rely upon amnesty as a regular vehicle for late payment was considered. An excellent resource for navigating the finer details is the FAQ made available HERE.
One thing that’s clear from every resource reporting on this legislation. It is uncertain when—or even if, this opportunity will be made available again. Anyone who owes state taxes in Maryland should weigh the pros and cons. This is an excellent opportunity to work with a professional tax adviser that is knowledgeable and well-versed on ever-changing state tax laws.
We believe this is an event to embrace. And it has little downside for most situations. Don’t deal with lines or checks. Instead, it is recommended that you pay by direct debit to the Maryland Comptroller. If you’re not already resolving or shoring up your financial situation with a team of professional enrolled agents, accountants, and tax preparers, give us a call today at 855-557-2222. We may be able assist with tax debt relief.