Important Information if you have a hidden offshore account – Deadline is Extended.

In a press release issued today from Washington, the Internal Revenue Service announced it is extending the voluntary disclosure deadline from Sept 23, 2009, to October 15, 2009.

In March the IRS issued special provisions to allow taxpayers with unreported income from offshore accounts to voluntarily come forward and avoid some very harsh penalties.

Apparently this was a very popular action when taken in conjunction with the actions of some foreign banks to agree to disclose names to the IRS. Taxpayers who do not voluntarily disclose their hidden accounts by the new deadline face much harsher civil penalties, where applicable, and possible criminal prosecution.

The Internal Revenue Service had received repeated requests from tax practitioners and attorneys around the country following a large number of taxpayer requests. The deadline extension is intended to provide some relief for those taxpayers who wanted to come forward prior to the deadline but were facing logistical and administrative challanges in meeting the deadline.  The extension will allow tax preparers and attorneys the necessary time to interview and advise their backlog of taxpayers with these hidden accounts, and prepare the necessary paperwork to qualify for the special penalty provisions.

The IRS also announced that there will be no further extensions. So, if you are one of those with an unreported offshore account, now is the time to come forward. Time is running out. ACT NOW!