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FTB Offers Tax Relief to Baja California Quake Victims

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Brenda.Voet@ftb.ca.gov

Public Affairs Office
Brenda Voet

For Immediate Release

05.14.2010

Sacramento – Franchise Tax Board (FTB) today announced that taxpayers affected by the Baja California earthquake in the federally-declared disaster area will be given special tax relief.

The President declared a major disaster for Imperial County as a result of the April 4, 2010 earthquake. The earthquake was widely felt in Southern California, particularly in Imperial County, where it caused serious structural damage.

Special tax rules apply to disaster losses. Taxpayers can claim a disaster loss in the year before the disaster occurred by amending their 2009 tax return filed earlier this year. The advantage of claiming a disaster loss in the prior year is that FTB can quickly issue a refund. Or, the taxpayers can wait and claim a disaster loss on the 2010 tax return that they will file next spring.

Taxpayers claiming the disaster loss should write “Baja California Earthquake 2010” in red ink at the top of the tax return to alert FTB to expedite the refund. If taxpayers are e-filing, they should follow the software instructions to enter the disaster information. Taxpayers can get FTB’s amended 2009 tax return or original 2009 tax return at FTB’s website, ftb.ca.gov.

If taxpayers affected by the earthquake need copies of state tax returns to replace lost or damaged ones, they should complete Form FTB 3516, Request for Copy of Tax Return available online at ftb.ca.gov. Print “Baja California Earthquake 2010” in red at the top of the request. Disaster victims receive free copies of tax returns.

For more disaster loss information, go to FTB’s website at ftb.ca.gov and search for FTB 1034, Disaster Loss or to the IRS’s website at irs.gov and search for IRS 547, Casualties, Disasters, and Thefts.

Taxpayers who have questions about their accounts can call FTB toll-free at 800.852.5711, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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