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  3. Neal J and Catherine A Van Berg

Neal J and Catherine A Van Berg


On May 5, 2021, the Department assessed the Taxpayers for personal income tax, penalty and interest. On July 14, 2021, the Taxpayers filed a formal protest of the assessment. The extended payment deadline for the 2019 tax year for personal income tax was April 15, 2021, but the Taxpayers made their payment after that deadline, and paid the required estimated payments based on their income during the tax year late as well. The Taxpayers argued that due to the financial hardship caused because of the COVID-19 pandemic they were unable to pay by the extended deadline. The Taxpayers were able to provide clear and convincing evidence that they faced financial hardship due to the pandemic. Additionally, both Taxpayers became ill with COVID-19 for significant period of time and were hospitalized. Based on this evidence and because both taxpayers were impacted by illness with COVID-19 at the time of the extended due date, the Hearing Officer agreed that the penalty for late payment could be abated under statute and regulation, and because of the extraordinary circumstances of the pandemic. However, the Hearing Officer ordered that the estimated payment penalty and interest on the late payment be paid, because nothing in statute provided for the abatement of this type of penalty or interest.