COOK COUNTY, Ill. — President Biden has declared a major disaster exists in Cook County due to recent severe storms and subsequent flooding.
The declaration was made Tuesday specifically for those impacted by the weather events from June 29 to July 2. It will make Federal funding available to affected individuals in Cook County.
According to the release from the White House, assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster. Funding will also be available for hazard mitigation measures.
Damage assessments are continuing in other areas, and more counties and additional forms of assistance may be designated after the assessments are fully completed.
Thursday the Internal Revenue Service announced an extension of certain tax deadlines for those impacted by the federally designated disaster. See below for the full text of the IRS announcement.
Following President Biden’s declaration, U.S. Congressman Danny Davis held a press conference Tuesday thanking him for the assistance, but U.S. Representative LaShawn Ford also spoke during the press conference to warn residents of scammers and thieves who may be trying to take advantage of a bad situation.
“Beware of unexpected phone calls or visits to your home from people claiming to be FEMA housing inspectors, or people working for FEMA,” Ford said. “FEMA representatives will have a FEMA application number … Do not give your personal info to anyone claiming to be an inspector.”
In a Friday, Aug. 18 morning press release, FEMA provided the following information:
“Disaster Survivor Assistance (DSA) teams from FEMA are going door-to-door in Cook County communities, helping disaster-impacted residents navigate the federal assistance process.
These teams will be visiting homes, businesses and nonprofit organizations in affected areas to help residents register for assistance, identify and address immediate and emerging needs, and make referrals to other local, state and voluntary agencies for additional support.
DSA teams will never ask for or accept money and will always be wearing a FEMA identification badge with a photograph. A FEMA shirt, vest or jacket is not proof of identity. While helping someone register, they will ask for personal information, including social security number, annual income and bank information. Residents are encouraged to ask for identification before providing any personal information. They can also call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362 to verify a FEMA visit is legitimate.
Cook County residents don’t have to wait for a DSA team to register for assistance. To register, download the FEMA Mobile App, visit DisasterAssistance.gov or call 800-621-3362. If you use video relay service (VRS), captioned telephone service or others, give FEMA your number for that service when you apply.”
IRS announcement on tax relief made 8/17/23:
Victims of severe storms and flooding in parts of Illinois that began on June 29, 2023, now have until Oct. 31, 2023, to file various individual and business tax returns and make tax payments, the Internal Revenue Service announced today.
Following the disaster declaration issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, individuals and households affected by severe storms and flooding that reside or have a business in Cook County qualify for tax relief. The declaration permits the IRS to postpone certain tax-filing and tax-payment deadlines for taxpayers who reside or have a business in the disaster area. For instance, certain deadlines falling on or after June 29, 2023, and before Oct. 31, 2023, are granted additional time to file through Oct. 31, 2023.
As a result, affected individuals and businesses will have until Oct. 31, 2023, to file returns and pay any taxes that were originally due during this period. This includes 2022 individual income tax returns due on Oct. 16, 2023. The IRS noted, however, that because tax payments related to these 2022 returns were due on April 18, 2023, those payments are not eligible for this relief.
The Oct. 31, 2023, deadline also applies to the quarterly estimated tax payment, normally due on Sept. 15, 2023. In addition, penalties on payroll and excise tax deposits due on or after June 29, 2023, and before July 14, 2023, will be abated as long as the tax deposits were made by July 14, 2023. In addition, businesses with an original or extended due date including, among others, calendar-year partnerships and S corporations whose 2022 extensions run out on Sept. 15, 2023, and calendar-year corporations whose 2022 extensions run out on Oct. 16, 2023, also qualify for the Oct. 31, 2023 deadline.
If an affected taxpayer receives a late filing or late payment penalty notice from the IRS that has an original or extended filing, payment or deposit due date that falls within the postponement period, the taxpayer should call the telephone number on the notice to have the IRS abate the penalty.
The IRS automatically identifies taxpayers located in the covered disaster area and applies filing and payment relief. But affected taxpayers who reside or have a business located outside the covered disaster area should call the IRS disaster hotline at 866-562-5227 to request this tax relief.
Covered Disaster Area
The localities listed above constitute a covered disaster area for purposes of Treas. Reg. §301.7508A-1(d)(2) and are entitled to the relief detailed below.
Taxpayers considered to be affected taxpayers eligible for the postponement of time to file returns, pay taxes and perform other time-sensitive acts are those taxpayers listed in Treas. Reg. § 301.7508A-1(d)(1), and include individuals who live, and businesses (including tax-exempt organizations) whose principal place of business is located, in the covered disaster area. Taxpayers not in the covered disaster area, but whose records necessary to meet a deadline listed in Treas. Reg. § 301.7508A-1(c) are in the covered disaster area, are also entitled to relief. In addition, all relief workers affiliated with a recognized government or philanthropic organization assisting in the relief activities in the covered disaster area and any individual visiting the covered disaster area who was killed or injured as a result of the disaster are entitled to relief.
Under section 7508A, the IRS gives affected taxpayers until Oct. 31, 2023, to file most tax returns (including individual, corporate, and estate and trust income tax returns; partnership returns, S corporation returns, and trust returns; estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer tax returns; annual information returns of tax-exempt organizations; and employment and certain excise tax returns), that have either an original or extended due date occurring on or after June 29, 2023, and before Oct. 31, 2023, are granted additional time to file through Oct. 31, 2023.
Affected taxpayers that have an estimated income tax payment originally due on or after June 29, 2023, and before Oct. 31, 2023, are postponed through Oct. 31, 2023, will not be subject to penalties for failure to pay estimated tax installments as long as such payments are paid on or before Oct. 31, 2023.
The IRS also gives affected taxpayers until Oct. 31, 2023, to perform other time-sensitive actions described in Treas. Reg. § 301.7508A-1(c)(1) and Rev. Proc. 2018-58, 2018-50 IRB 990 (December 10, 2018), that are due to be performed on or after June 29, 2023, and before Oct. 31, 2023, are granted additional time to file through Oct. 31, 2023.
This relief also includes the filing of Form 5500 series returns that were required to be filed on or after June 29, 2023, and before Oct. 31, 2023, are postponed through Oct. 31, 2023, in the manner described in section 8 of Rev. Proc. 2018-58. The relief described in section 17 of Rev. Proc. 2018-58, pertaining to like-kind exchanges of property, also applies to certain taxpayers who are not otherwise affected taxpayers and may include acts required to be performed before or after the period above.
Unless an act is specifically listed in Rev. Proc. 2018-58, the postponement of time to file and pay does not apply to information returns in the W-2, 1094, 1095, 1097, 1098 or 1099 series; to Forms 1042-S, 3921, 3922 or 8027; or to employment and excise tax deposits. However, penalties on deposits due on or after June 29, 2023, and before Oct. 31, 2023, will be abated as long as the tax deposits were made by Oct. 31, 2023.
Affected taxpayers in a federally declared disaster area have the option of claiming disaster-related casualty losses on their federal income tax return for either the year in which the event occurred, or the prior year. See Publication 547 for details. Individuals may deduct personal property losses that are not covered by insurance or other reimbursements. For details, see Form 4684, Casualties and Thefts and its instructions. Affected taxpayers claiming the disaster loss on their return should put the Disaster Designation, “Illinois, Severe Storms and Flooding”, in bold letters at the top of the form. Be sure to include the FEMA disaster declaration number, DR-4728-IL on any return. See Publication 547 for details.
The IRS will waive the usual fees and requests for copies of previously filed tax returns for affected taxpayers. Taxpayers should put the assigned Disaster Designation, Illinois severe storms and flooding (DR-4728-IL), in bold letters at the top of Form 4506, Request for Copy of Tax Return, or Form 4506-T, Request for Transcript of Tax Return, as appropriate, and submit it to the IRS.
Affected taxpayers who are contacted by the IRS on a collection or examination matter should explain how the disaster impacts them so that the IRS can provide appropriate consideration to their case. Taxpayers may download forms and publications from the official IRS website, IRS.gov.