If you owe tax to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, relief is on the way.

From April 21, 2017 through June 19, 2017, Pennsylvania is offering a Tax Amnesty Program. During this 60-day period, the Department of Revenue will waive all penalties, collection and lien fees, and one-half of the interest due for anyone who participates.

All taxes owed to Pennsylvania and administered by the Department of Revenue are included in the program, including personal income tax, corporate net income tax, inheritance and estate tax, realty transfer tax, and sales and use tax. Tax periods eligible for amnesty are those for which a delinquency existed as of December 31, 2015.

All individuals, businesses, and other entities with state tax delinquencies as of 12/31/2015 are generally eligible to participate. But, persons who participated in the 2010 Tax Amnesty Program are ineligible, as are those currently under criminal investigation for an alleged violation of any tax law.

It is easy to participate; you simply must:

  • File an online Amnesty application.
  • File all required tax returns.
  • Pay all delinquent taxes and ½ of the interest due by June 19, 2017.

Further, you must remain compliant with your tax obligations after participating. The Department may re-impose all penalty and interest abated during the Amnesty Period if, within two years of the Amnesty Period, you: i) become delinquent for 3 consecutive periods for semi-monthly, monthly, or quarterly filing or payment; or ii) you become delinquent and are 8 or more months late in filing reports and/or payments due on an annual basis.

As to be expected with a tax amnesty program, there are consequences for failing to participate: a 5% non-participation penalty will be imposed on all eligible tax, penalty, and interest that is not paid during the Amnesty Period. The penalty will not apply, however, if you are currently in bankruptcy, have received a bankruptcy discharge determination, have an active deferred payment plan, or if your tax liability is covered by a timely administrative or judicial appeal.

For many taxpayers, the Tax Amnesty Program offers the opportunity to settle outstanding tax debts at a fraction of the current balance due. If you have any questions about the Tax Amnesty Program or need assistance complying with the program or any other obligations to the PA Department of Revenue, please feel free to contact the tax attorneys at Mosebach, Funt, Dayton & Duckworth.  Additional information is available at the Department of Revenue’s Tax Amnesty website (http://www.revenue.pa.gov/taxamnesty).