On Aug. 7, 2020, the IRS released Notice 2020-55 automatically postponing the due date for paying and reporting federal sporting goods excise taxes until Oct. 31, 2020 for returns due April 30. Further, the period from May 1 through October 31 will be disregarded for purposes of calculating any penalties or interest for first quarter returns that are not paid until October 31. The penalties and interest will begin to accrue on Nov. 1, 2020 if the taxes are not paid or if the returns are not filed.
This notice follows Notice 2020-48 which previously postponed the due dates for second quarter federal sporting goods excise tax payments and reporting. (See our alert on the previous notice.) Although this notice provides a similarly postponed due date, taxpayers are not permitted to combine their first and second quarter reporting’s on one Forms 720, Quarterly Federal Excise Tax Return. Taxpayers must follow the procedures set out in Notice 2020-48 to take advantage of the second quarter postponement and Notice 2020-55 to take advantage of the first quarter postponement.
Washington National Tax Observations
Taxpayers should be aware that the postponement for paying and reporting their federal sporting goods excise tax does not affect the other excise taxes reported on the Form 720. Taxpayers who have missed the April 30 filing deadline for the other excise taxes reported on the From 720 can late file the forms, with the sport fishing and archery lines blank, in order to stop the further accrual of late filing penalties and interest. Taxpayers who are unsure of their filing obligations or the deadlines for their excise tax liabilities should consult their tax advisor for clarification.