The first day of spring has been the last thing on the minds of many as the country and world brace for the coronavirus. In an effort to provide a financial backstop for individuals and the economy, state and federal governments have been implementing new policies and changes to existing timelines.

So far there have been changes to tax filing deadlines, student loan payments, leave from work, and unemployment insurance.

Tax Changes

The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) have a website in place to help people keep updated with changes to tax deadlines. You can visit the link here.

As I’m writing this, we’ve already seen the IRS push the tax payment deadline to July 15th. Maryland is also July 15th, California moved to June 15th, and Virginia to May 1st (although all states could now be July 15th to mirror the change from the IRS). While sites such as the AICPA’s are helpful, we always suggest looking at the government agency’s website for the most current and accurate information.

If you are expecting a refund, the timeline on that should stay the same unless the agencies are required to close for a period of time. We recommend that you contact your CPA and government agency to see how these changes could impact you.

If you had scheduled an automatic payment for your 2019 state or federal taxes due and/or your first quarterly payment of 2020, talk with your CPA to confirm that you may wait until July 15th to make your payments. If you can defer those payments, you can call the IRS at 1-888-353-4537 to cancel your April payment. You will need to make separate arrangements for your July payments or any penalties due in April.

Student Loan Payments

The federal government is also easing the stress on student loan borrowers by waiving interest due on federal loans for at least the next 60 days. The monthly payment amount does not change if you continue your payments. If you make payments, they will first cover any interest or late payments due prior to March 13th. Any payments going forward go directly to paying down the loan’s principal. Contact your loan servicing company to determine if your loan qualifies and how making payments or delaying payments could impact you long term.

Visit the federal student aid site for additional information.

Paid Time Off & Unemployment

Many small and medium-sized businesses do not offer paid sick leave for their employees. With recent legislation, companies with fewer than 500 employees now must offer sick leave to help those effected by the coronavirus. If you’re an employee of a firm in this category and cannot go to work, contact your HR department for more information about paid sick leave.

If you’re one of the many who are likely to lose their jobs as a result of the economic slowdown, the government has also stepped in to help strengthen unemployment benefits. If you have lost your job or if you’re worried you might, please contact us right away to discuss your options.

Scammers

Unfortunately, during times of fear and panic, scammers step up their efforts. Because people are at an emotional peak and their minds are elsewhere, they become more susceptible to scams and phishing. Help keep yourself safe by using the same precautions you would normally use when opening emails and online links.

Here’s more information about how to help protect yourself from being scammed.

Please keep in mind that things are changing at lightning speed. The above information could change by the time you read this newsletter. Talk with your CPA, lender, and government agencies to confirm their policies and to see how these changes could impact you.

We will continue to keep clients posted of changes as we learn of them. Contact our office with any questions you might have.

The opinions voiced in this material are for informational purposes only and are not intended to provide specific advice to any individual.  Consult your legal, tax, and/or financial advisor to determine what is appropriate for your situation.

As a Registered Investment Advisor (RIA), Partnership Wealth Management is committed to providing our clients with financial planning and wealth management services to help them work towards their financial goals. At Partnership Wealth Management, we have a long history of working with the LGBT community. Among the many services we offer are financial planning and estate planning strategies for gay and lesbian couples. Financial planning is an important part of preparing for the future; contact us today to get started: www.partnershipwm.com.

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Author Profile

Woody Derricks, CFP®
Woody Derricks, CFP®
Throughout my nearly 20 years as a Financial Advisor, I have seen some of the best and worst markets in our history. That experience allows me to approach my clients with the knowledge of how the markets fit into their greater financial picture. At Partnership Wealth Management we help everyday people who have accumulated wealth make sense of what they have and work with them to maximize their financial opportunities in a relaxed, comfortable, and professional environment. While we help people from all walks of life, many of our clients are same-sex couples searching for a knowledgeable, LGBT-friendly financial advisor to help them with their unique financial planning needs. I am a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional and have the Accredited Domestic Partnership Advisor(sm) designation. As a Registered Investment Advisor, we are not tied to any company’s investment products allowing us to provide unbiased advice by offering a wide array of investments and other products to our clients. Since 2001, I have been writing articles on financial planning for several regional newspapers and have been a guest speaker on LGBT financial issues for various local and national organizations. Additionally, I have conducted financial planning workshops for large corporations and government agencies. Non-Profit Work I believe that it is important to give back to the community and currently serve as the treasurer for FreeState Justice and as a co-founder/president of Paws for a Cause. I’m a current member of several LBGT, environmental, and local community groups. Personal My wife, Heidi and I enjoy camping, hiking, and traveling with our daughter, Elise, and our dogs, Fenway & Roxy. Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and federally registered CFP (with flame design) in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board’s initial and ongoing certification requirements.