Filing and paying your taxes is a serious obligation that cannot easily be avoided or postponed. If you fail to file and/or pay on time, you will be responsible for penalties and interest that can make your tax debt add up quickly. Penalties and interest can sometimes be avoided by showing you had reasonable cause for filing and/or paying late. For example, if you were incapacitated by serious injury or illness, or if there was some act of God occuring in your locality that prevented you from filing or paying on time, the IRS would likely abate the penalties and interest that would have accrued during that time.
Sometimes the IRS automatically grants penalty relief when there are major storms and disasters. Reasonable cause is presumed in these situations and the taxpayer need not provide any individual proof. FEMA has designated certain areas affected by Hurricane Sandy and related storms as official disaster areas and the IRS followed suit by granting limited tax relief. The IRS is giving businesses an extra seven days to make their quarterly tax deposits — 3rd Quarter deposits that are normally due on October 31st, will not be late as long as they are made by November 7th.