The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania will offer amnesty to those who owe back state taxes, for only the second time in its history.

For 54 days, between April 26 and June 18, 2010, the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue will waive 100 percent of the penalties and half of the interest for anyone who pays delinquent state taxes, including out-of-state businesses who owe Pennsylvania taxes.

Historic budget gaps across the U.S. have been prompting many states to search for additional revenue. In 2009, Connecticut, New Jersey, Louisiana and Virginia were among the states that held tax amnesty campaigns.

The only previous Pennsylvania Tax Amnesty program, in 1995-1996, saw 63,506 returns with a total collection of $92.8 million. That tax amnesty program waived penalties but required full payment of taxes and interest. Pennsylvania received about 10 percent of its tax amnesty returns from out-of-state people and businesses from every state in the country.    

Delinquent taxpayers who don’t file during this year’s tax amnesty will be penalized an additional 5 percent.

The 2010 Pennsylvania Tax Amnesty will be completely online.  All returns must be filed via the Internet at The site officially goes live on April 26.  No paper applications will be distributed or received. Those with questions are encouraged to call the state’s help line at 1-(877) 34-PAYUP. That hotline goes live on April 7.

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