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IRS gives most Americans an extra 90 days to pay their taxes

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Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

As part of the Trump administration's response to the growing coronavirus crisis, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced Tuesday that most Americans will get an extra 90-day grace period to pay their taxes.

Although the IRS's official guidance document was not available at the time of the publication of this article, Mnuchin announced in a joint press conference with President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence that individuals who owe less than $1 million and corporations who owe less than $10 million in taxes would be eligible for the grace period, during which no interest or penalties will accrue.

The payment extension, however, does not necessarily mean that Americans will also get a grace period for filing their returns. Mnuchin indicated that Americans who are expecting a refund will need to file their taxes by April 15 in order to get prompt refund processing. "We encourage those Americans who can file their taxes to continue to file their taxes on April 15," Mnuchin said.

However, it was less clear from Mnuchin's press conference whether this was merely advice or a requirement, and Mnuchin did not make clear whether Americans who are not expecting a refund are still required to file on or before April 15 in order to avoid penalties for failure to file. TheBlaze has reached out to the IRS for clarification on this question, but did not immediately receive a response. This article will be updated when the official guidance document from the IRS has been released to the public.

The IRS frequently offers filing and/or payment relief to specific groups of people who are affected by natural or man-made disasters. For example, the IRS offered relief of various kinds for victims of recent hurricanes, including Dorian, Michael, and Florence, as well as the California Wildfires and Tennessee tornadoes. However, this is the first time in recent history that the IRS has offered wholesale filing and/or payment relief to almost all Americans across the country.

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