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2015 Maryland Tax Amnesty Program

Maryland imposes hefty penalties and charges a whopping 13% interest on delinquent taxes.  This fall, however, taxpayers will have the opportunity for relief under a new Maryland Tax Amnesty Program.

The Maryland Comptroller will declare an amnesty period from September 1, 2015 to October 30, 2015, (“Amnesty Period”) applicable to most State and local taxes.  Taxpayers that participate in the new Maryland Tax Amnesty Program and meet certain requirements will receive a waiver of all civil penalties (except previously assessed fraud penalties) and 50% of the interest associated with their delinquent taxes (“Amnesty Waiver”).

Amnesty Waiver

The Amnesty Waiver applies to taxpayers who, on or before December 31, 2014, failed to file a tax return or failed to pay a tax liability for:

  1. Individual income tax;
  2. Corporate income tax;
  3. Withholding tax;
  4. Sales and use tax; or
  5. Admissions and amusement tax.

To qualify for the Amnesty Waiver, the taxpayer must do the following during the September 1st through October 30th Amnesty Period:

  1. File a delinquent return and pay the tax in full, including 50% of the interest due, on that return;
  2. Pay any outstanding tax plus 50% of any interest due on a previously filed return.

Amnesty Payment Agreement

If a taxpayer is unable to pay the tax in full during the Amnesty Period, then the taxpayer must enter into a written payment agreement with the Comptroller (“Amnesty Payment Agreement”) to fully pay the tax and 50% of the interest due on or before December 31, 2016.  The taxpayer must comply with the terms of the Amnesty Payment Agreement or the Amnesty Waiver will be void.

Criminal Amnesty

In addition to the Amnesty Waiver, a taxpayer generally may not be charged with a criminal tax offense arising out of any return filed and tax paid during the Amnesty Period or in accordance with an Amnesty Payment Agreement (“Criminal Amnesty”).

However, Criminal Amnesty does not apply to:

  1. Any criminal charges already pending in Maryland courts during the Amnesty Period; or
  2. Any criminal charges under investigation by certain Maryland agencies such as the Maryland Attorney General’s Office, the Office of the State Prosecutor, and the Office of the State’s Attorney.   (criminal charges under investigation by the Office of the Comptroller will not disqualify a taxpayer from Criminal Amnesty)

Taxpayers should consult a tax professional at Rosenberg Martin Greenberg, LLP to discuss participation in the new Maryland Tax Amnesty Program.

For more information or to make an appointment, call Giovanni Alberotanza at 410.649.4990 or email galberotanza@rosenbergmartin.com or Brian Crepeau at 410.649.4981 or email bcrepeau@rosenbergmartin.com.

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If you are seeking counsel for a tax related legal matter, contact the Rosenberg Martin Greenberg Tax Controversy experts.

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