Tax Alert

Postponement of tax due dates considering recent earthquakes

As a result of the damages caused by earthquakes that have affected and continue to affect Puerto Rico since January 6, 2020, the Puerto Rico Treasury Department (“PRTD”) announced the postponement of various tax filing and payment due dates for the month of January 2020 through the issuance of Internal Revenue Circular Letter Num. 20-02 (“CC RI 20-02”).

Section 6080.12(c) of the 2011 Puerto Rico Internal Revenue Code, as amended (the “Code”), empowers the Secretary of Treasury of Puerto Rico (“Secretary”) to extend the due date of the payment of all kind of taxes or the filing of any form or declaration required by the Code, for taxpayers that have been affected by a disaster officially declared by the Governor of Puerto Rico.

On January 7, 2020, the Puerto Rico Governor issued Executive Order Num. OE-2020-01 to declare a state of emergency considering the damages caused by various earthquakes that greatly affected Puerto Rico. The earthquakes caused significant damages to critical infrastructure, life and property, including roads, bridges, schools, homes and other related damages. In addition, work in the government of Puerto Rico was cancelled for several days. Similarly, the start date of the school year was postponed.

To that end, the PRTD has issued Internal Revenue Circular Letter Num. 20-02 with the purpose of postponing the deadline to file certain forms and declarations along with the payment of certain taxes that are due during the month of January 2020 and establishes that no interest, surcharges or penalties will be imposed due to said postponement.

To such effect, the new due dates for the following tax returns and/or payment of taxes are as follows:

Type of form

Original due date

Type of tax

New due date

Returns, declarations and forms related to employer contributions, withholdings and payments of estimated income tax, including the fourth 2019 estimated tax payment for individuals

January 7, 2020 thru January 30, 2020

 

Payroll

Withholding Tax

Income Tax

January 31, 2020

Income Tax Returns, including related forms, and requests of extension of time to file the returns

January 15, 2020

Income Tax

March 16, 2020

Monthly Excise Tax Returns and Tax on Imports Monthly Returns, including the corresponding payment

January 10, 2020

 

Excise Tax

Sales and Use Tax

January 31, 2020

Monthly Sales and Use Tax Return

January 20, 2020

Sales and Use Tax

January 31, 2020

First installment of biweekly Sales and Use Tax payment

January 15, 2020

Sales and Use Tax

January 31, 2020

*The second installment of biweekly Sales and Use Tax payment for the month of January 2020, and all License Permits with an expiration date during the month of January 2020, will remain with the same deadline, which is January 31, 2020.

 

With regards to imports, the PRTD has taken the necessary measures to ensure the continuity of the process of importing and taking possession of the merchandise.  For this purpose, it is reported that the Unified Internal Revenue System ("SURI") continues to operate without any issues. Taxpayers may complete their declaration through SURI and pay the corresponding tax in order to obtain the authorization to take possession of the merchandise. Should any issue arise, the importer may visit the Satellite Office of the Consumer Tax Bureau corresponding to the maritime or land carrier used to introduce the merchandise to Puerto Rico and complete the procedure to obtain the authorization to take possession of the merchandise.

It is further clarified that the provisions of the circular letter will not apply to the following forms and therefore their filing deadline will be the one established in the Code, which is January 31, 2020, for taxable year 2019:

  • Withholding Statements (Form 499R-2/W-2PR)
  • Reconciliation Statements of Income Tax Withheld (Form 499 R-3)
  • Informative Return – Mortgage Interest (Form 480.7A)
  • Informative Return – Automobile Lease Payments (Form 480.7D).

The PRTD will make the necessary adjustments in its tax information systems to grant the automatic waiver of interest, surcharges and penalties imposed by the Code, in those cases where the taxpayer has fulfilled the tax responsibilities and dates set forth above. However, taxpayers who have been imposed interest, surcharges and penalties despite having complied with what is set forth here, may request the elimination through SURI, as appropriate, or may make such request in person at any of the Service Centers that are currently available.

Please contact our Tax Department should you require additional information regarding this or any other tax issue.  We will be glad to assist you.