New program helps citizens catch up with state taxes - Tucson Local Media: Business

New program helps citizens catch up with state taxes

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Posted: Wednesday, September 28, 2011 3:00 am

On Sept. 1, Arizona launched a tax recovery program that is running through Oct. 1. The legislature included the proposal in the budget bill that was passed and signed by Governor Brewer on April 6.

The proposal gives individuals and businesses the opportunity to file past due Arizona state tax returns with no civil penalties and a reduced amount of interest. The goal of this program is to offer relief and a fresh start to those taxpayers who, for whatever reason, underreported or failed to file their taxes.

“Many times, taxpayers get behind in their taxes for reasons beyond their control,” Arizona Department of Revenue Director John Greene explained. “This tax recovery program gives taxpayers who have fallen behind an opportunity to bring their accounts up to date.”

Some individuals and businesses are not paying their fair share of taxes, according to a press release from the State. These range from those who don’t realize they should be paying tax to those who deliberately underreport their taxes or refuse to file altogether.

When taxpayers underreport or fail to file their taxes, it places an unfair burden on the honest taxpayers who are paying for the essential government services enjoyed by all Arizonans.

The tax types eligible to file include individual and corporate income, withholding, luxury, transaction privilege (sales), and use. Tax Recovery applications will only be accepted through Oct. 1, the same day the total tax liability must be paid in full with the recovery application.

For taxes filed on an annual basis, such as income tax, recovery is available for years beginning on or after Jan. 1, 2004, and ending before Jan. 1, 2010. Taxpayers who file taxes, such as transaction privilege or withholding, on a monthly or quarterly basis are eligible for tax periods beginning on or after Jan. 1, 2005 and ending before Jan. 1, 2010.

“Tax recovery is a chance for those who live, work or do business in Arizona to come clean and pay any back state taxes they owe in a manner that is advantageous for the taxpayers and the State of Arizona,” said Greene. “The taxpayer can file and pay without any civil penalties or threat of prosecution and with a reduced interest rate and the state benefits by the voluntary payments which save the time and expense of audit and collection efforts.”

Taxpayers should visit http://www.azdor.gov/taxrecovery.aspx for more information about the tax recovery program. They may also call the Arizona Department of Revenue at 1-877-542-2281.

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