Washington (Aug. 18, 2003) -- The Northeast blackout of 2003 won't turn into a disaster for taxpayers who missed deadlines for tax returns or payments last week - they're getting an extended deadline, the Internal Revenue Service said.

The IRS will consider on time any tax returns or payments due from Aug. 15 through Friday, Aug. 22, if they are completed by Aug. 22, 2003. One wrinkle -- the law won't allow the agency to abate interest on any overdue taxes during this period.

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