ODT offering tax amnesty

Written on Jan 11, 2018

By Gary Hunt, senior content editor

An ongoing amnesty program from the Ohio Department of Taxation offers individuals and businesses the chance to pay some delinquencies without penalty and half the regular interest.

“It's an opportunity for people to come forward, catch up on any tax liabilities they have and get a break,” said Ohio Tax Commissioner Joe Testa. “They'll obviously save some money, as opposed to if, in fact, we discovered them through one of our programs.”

If the department discovered the liability before 2018, the taxpayer is ineligible for this program, and still on the hook for the full amount. Amnesty is an effort to ferret out tax liabilities it doesn’t know about, with ODT’s stated goal being collection of more than $20 million in tax revenue.

Testa joined us on the latest episode of OSPCA Spotlight to discuss the program, which runs from Jan. 1 through Feb. 15.

“That’s about six weeks,” Testa said. “It's a manageable time period. You don't want it to go on for too long, and you don't want to do them [amnesty programs] too frequently, either. 2012 was the last one we did, so it's almost been six years.”

Amnesty is available only for taxes that were due and payable as of May 1, 2017. Eligible taxes include individual income tax; school district income tax; employer withholding tax; employer withholding for school district income tax; pass-through entity tax; sales tax; use tax; commercial activity tax; financial institutions tax; cigarette and other tobacco products taxes; and alcoholic beverage taxes.

Learn more, including how to apply, at www.ohiotaxamnesty.gov or by calling 800-304-3211.

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