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IRS Provides Form 5500 Filing Relief for California Wildfire Victims

The Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) announced that it has granted retirement plan sponsors in the wildfire disaster areas relief for the filing of their Form 5500.  The relief generally applies to plan sponsors in the California counties of Butte, Los Angeles, and Ventura, and covers filings that were due to be filed on or after November 8, 2018 and before April 30, 2019.  Plan Sponsors now have until April 30, 2019 to file returns due during this time period.

For example, a plan sponsor in one of the affected counties whose Form 5500 filing would normally be due on January 31, 2019 now has until April 30, 2019 to file the return.  The process for filing under the disaster relief is described in IRS Revenue Procedure 2007-56, section 8.

While the IRS automatically identifies plan sponsors in the covered disaster areas and applies the automatic filing relief, plan sponsors who have a business or live outside the covered counties, but have been impacted by the wildfires, need to contact the IRS disaster hotline at 866-562-5227 to request the Form 5500 filing relief.  Further, affected plan sponsors that are contacted by the IRS regarding an examination of their plan should discuss and explain their situation with the agent assigned to the examination so that appropriate consideration may be given to their case.

Additional information is available on the IRS’s website at https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/tax-relief-in-disaster-situations.

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