New York (Aug. 7, 2003) -- The New York State Society of CPAs and its tax oversight committee task force are urging Congress not to extend the electronic filing deadline, fearing it could confuse taxpayers and cause additional problems in the process.

The Taxpayer Protection and IRS Accountability Act of 2002 includes a provision to extend the tax deadline to April 30 for individuals who file electronically. The NYSSCPA wants Congress to consider the unintended effects of this provision, which the organization feels would be counterproductive and will not encourage additional use of e-filing by CPAs.

"Although the NYSSCPA encouraged the use of electronic filing, an extended deadline will not encourage this process, and instead could be counterproductive", said tax oversight committee taskforce chair, Maryann Winters. She is also a CPA with the Syracuse, NY-based firm Baasch & Winters CPA.

According to a four-page report the tax oversight committee issued to Congress, the NYSSCPA strongly believes that an April 30 deadline “will give taxpayers an incentive to file electronically because they can delay payment of taxes for an additional two weeks, gaining thereby the time value of their money for that time period, is faulty.”
The report also stated:
• Unless all the states agree to change their April 15 deadlines to coincide with the federal changes, taxpayers and practitioners will not gain any advantage because most state filings use information from the federal return.
• There are occasions when e-filed returns are rejected through no fault of the taxpayer or the CPA. These are situations that cannot be anticipated, such as electronic rejection because another taxpayer has previously filed a return using the taxpayer's social security number or the number of one of their dependents.

• Any taxpayer who currently pays estimated taxes based upon covering their prior year's tax will be unable to take advantage of the extended due date because they will not know the amount of the prior year's tax to cover.
The full report from the task force is available at
-- WebCPA

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