On Sept. 15, the Indiana Department of Revenue opened administration of a statewide tax amnesty program (“Tax Amnesty 2015”) that is expected to result in settlements of more than $90 million in tax liabilities. Generally, tax amnesty initiatives allow eligible taxpayers to settle past-due tax liabilities with the benefit of waived interest, penalties and collection fees.
Taxpayers with unpaid or underpaid liabilities for tax administered by the Indiana Department of Revenue for periods ending prior to Jan. 1, 2013, are eligible for the program. However, taxpayers who participated in the 2005 amnesty program are not eligible to participate in the 2015 program. The Indiana Department of Revenue identified about 260,000 taxpayers who may be eligible and approximately $545 million in outstanding liabilities for collection pursuant to Tax Amnesty 2015.
Amnesty is available for individual and corporate income, sales and use (gross retail), financial institution tax, fuel taxes, withholding, inheritance, estate or generation skipping transfer taxes administered by the Indiana Department of Revenue. Indiana property taxes and unemployment taxes are not administered by the Indiana Department of Revenue and thus are ineligible for Tax Amnesty 2015.
Eligible tax periods include those ending prior to Jan. 1, 2013. Tax liabilities for 2013, 2014 and 2015 are not eligible for participation in Tax Amnesty 2015.
The amnesty period is only two months long and ends at 8 p.m. on Nov. 16, 2015.
Double Penalties for Failure to Participate
The Indiana amnesty statute provides that taxpayers who choose not to apply for amnesty relief within the two-month amnesty period may be subject to double penalties on eligible liabilities.
How to Participate
Taxpayers who wish to participate in Indiana Tax Amnesty 2015 prior to the end of the amnesty period must:
- Enter into an amnesty agreement with the Indiana Department of Revenue.
- Pay in full all amnesty eligible liabilities (or establish an eligible payment plan).
- Relinquish all rights to protest, appeal or litigate taxes paid under amnesty.
- Agree not to claim refunds for taxes paid under amnesty.