The outbreak of COVID-19 in Pennsylvania has created an extraordinarily challenging situation for all Pennsylvanians and for all of us working for the Department of Revenue. Despite those challenges, we want taxpayers and members of the tax practitioner community to know that we are continuing to operate as best we can during this unprecedented situation. Below is some information that everyone should keep in mind.
We Are Still Taking Your Questions
With the department's call centers closed, Revenue staff, working remotely from their homes, are answering hundreds of taxpayer questions per day through our
Online Customer Service Center. This is a secure system that functions much like sending an email. You can submit a specific question about your account or return to a Revenue representative who has knowledge and expertise in the taxes the department is responsible for administering. We are using the Online Customer Service Center to do our best to remain responsive to our customers during this difficult situation.
Submit Your Returns Electronically
We are strongly encouraging all taxpayers to submit their returns and payments electronically. Despite the department's offices being closed, electronic returns and payments are being processed as usual, with most refunds also being issued.
Here are some ways that you can file your personal income tax returns (PA-40s):
PAdirecfile – This is a free, secure, state-only system available through the Department of Revenue's website.
Electronic Filing for Free: Other free electronic filing options are also available to file state and federal returns using software from a reputable vendor (income limits may apply). More vendor information is available on the Department of Revenue's website.
Electronic Filing for a Fee: Paid tax preparers and commercial tax preparation software providers that offer electronic filing, or e-filing, for a fee are an option for Pennsylvania taxpayers. E-filing offers advantages not available to taxpayers filing by paper, including error-reducing automatic calculators, instant confirmation of successful filing, faster refund processing and direct deposit options.
Here are other filing options available from the Department of Revenue:
e-TIDES – An online filing system for business taxpayers to file returns, make payments and manage their accounts
TeleFile – Use a toll-free number, 1-800-748-8299, to easily make payments for corporation taxes, employer withholding and other taxes
myPATH – An easy-to-use online system for motor and alternative fuel taxpayers, county offices with obligations for inheritance tax and realty transfer tax, and medical marijuana taxpayers
Taxpayers who do submit their returns via paper should know that there will be delays in the processing of their returns, due to the fact that our offices are closed as part of mitigation efforts to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. This could impact the processing of a taxpayer's refund if they are expecting one.
Keep Up with COVID-19 Developments
Recognizing that all Pennsylvanians and commonwealth businesses are being greatly affected during this pandemic, the department has extended deadlines for certain tax returns and payments. I am encouraging everyone to visit the department's
COVID-19 Information page on
www.revenue.pa.gov for the latest information. This is where we will share additional updates as this situation evolves. You can also visit the department's pages on Facebook,
Twitter and LinkedIn for the latest information.
I hope this message finds all of our taxpayers and those of you in the tax practitioner community staying safe with your loved ones. We will continue to do the best that we can to continue the department's operations through this challenging time.