Wednesday marks the deadline for Vermonters filing state and federal taxes. The government extended the April 15 deadline by three months, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
July 15 is the new due date for filing personal, corporate and fiduciary income taxes, homestead declarations and property tax credit claims.
The state made the decision to extend the deadlines in March, following the lead of the federal government. The extension was part of the state’s larger effort to blunt the blow of the economic crisis brought on by the pandemic, as about 90,000 Vermonters filed for unemployment in the wake of the Covid-19 emergency.
In March, officials speculated the state’s tax coffers could take a $200 million hit because of reduced spending, including a loss of $120 million to $140 million in general fund revenue for the fiscal year because of the deadline extension.
Tax Commissioner Craig Bolio said that so far, 339,000 Vermonters have filed personal income taxes.
Typically, the department receives between 385,000 and 390,000 filings. About 50,000 more are expected to come in before the Wednesday deadline.
Bolio said about 75,000 Vermonters have used the extension, meaning they filed between April 15 and Tuesday, while 265,000 filed before the “normal” deadline.
“This makes sense to us because the Department continued to encourage those expecting a refund to file because we have continued to process tax refunds throughout the spring and summer,” Bolio wrote in an email to VTDigger. “About 2/3rds of taxpayers are normally requesting a refund.”
Bolio also stressed the importance of the Vermont Homestead Declaration and Property Tax Credit form. He said approximately 20,000 Vermonters still need to file their homestead declarations to get the homestead education tax property rate for their properties.
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“This is a very important document to file, because without it, the taxpayer’s property tax bill may not be correct, AND they may be assessed penalties by their town for late filing,” Bolio wrote. “For taxpayers who still need to file their Homestead Declaration and Property Tax Credit form, they can do so for free on myVTax at myvtax.vermont.gov.”
The Department of Taxes encourages Vermonters to file electronically to increase accuracy and ensure refunds are processed sooner.
The department reported that 86% of Vermont personal income tax returns were filed electronically in 2019, and those who e-filed received refunds twice as quickly.
Additionally, the department urged eligible Vermonters to use Free File, a service that 65% of Vermonters apply for, but only 5% of eligible Vermonters used in 2019.
More information about tax filing can be found on the Department of Taxes website.
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