Whereas, The deferred operation of this act would tend to defeat its purpose, which is to immediately extend tax filing and payment deadlines for taxpayers of the commonwealth serving in combat areas or their spouses, therefore it is hereby declared to be an emergency law, necessary for the immediate preservation of the public convenience.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives
in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same,
SECTION 1. Chapter 62C of the General Laws is hereby amended by adding the following section:-
Section 81. (a) In the case of an individual serving in the Armed Forces of the United States, or serving in support of such Armed Forces, in an area designated by the President of the United States by Executive Order as a "combat zone" for purposes of section one hundred and twelve of the Code, at any time during the period designated by the President by Executive Order as the period of combatant activities in such zone for purposes of such section, or hospitalized as a result of injury received while serving in such area during such time, the period of service of such area, plus the period of continuous qualified hospitalization attributable to such injury, and in all cases under this section, the next one hundred and eighty days thereafter, shall be disregarded in determining, under the laws of the commonwealth, in respect of any tax liability, including any interest, penalty, additional amount, or addition to the tax of such individual:-
(1) Whether any of the following acts was performed within the time prescribed therefor:-
(A) filing any returns of income or estate tax, except income tax withheld at source;
(B) payment of any income or estate tax, except income tax withheld at source, or any installment thereof or of any other liability to the commonwealth in respect thereof;
(C) filing an application for abatement of any tax under section thirty-seven;
(D) filing a petition for abatement with the appellate tax board or probate court under section thirty-nine;
(E) allowance of a credit or refund of any tax;
(F) bringing suit upon any claim for credit or refund of any tax;
(G) assessment of any tax;
(H) giving or making any notice or demand for the payment of any tax, or with respect to any liability to the commonwealth in respect of any tax;
(I) collection, by the commissioner, by levy or otherwise, of the amount of any liability in respect of any tax;
(J) bringing suit by the commonwealth, or any officer on its behalf, in respect of any liability in respect of any tax; and
(K) any other act required or permitted under the laws of the commonwealth specified in regulations prescribed under this section by the commissioner.
(2) The amount of any credit or refund including interest.
(b) The provisions of this section shall apply to the spouse of any individual entitled to the benefits of subsection (a) for any taxable year beginning two years or less after the date designated under section one hundred and twelve of the Code as the date of termination of combatant activities in a combat zone.
(c) The period of service in the area referred to in subsection (a) shall include the period during which an individual entitled to benefits under subsection (a) is in a missing status within the meaning of section six thousand and thirteen (f)(3) of the Code.
(d) The application of subsection (a) shall be limited in the following manner under the following circumstances:
(1) if the commissioner determines the collection of the amount of any assessment would be jeopardized by delay, the provisions of subsection (a) shall not operate to stay collection of such amount by levy or otherwise as authorized by law. There shall be excluded from any amount assessed or collected pursuant to this paragraph the amount of interest, penalty, additional amount, and addition to the tax, if any, in respect of the period disregarded under subsection (a). In any case to which this paragraph relates, if the commissioner is required to give any notice to or make any demand upon any person, such requirement shall be deemed to be satisfied if the notice or demand is prepared and signed, in any case in which the address of such person last known to the commissioner is in an area for which United States post offices under instructions of the United States Postmaster General are not, by reason of the combatant activities, accepting mail for delivery at the time the notice or demand is signed. In such case the notice or demand shall be deemed to have been given or made upon the date it is signed; and
(2) the assessment or collection of any tax or of any liability to the commonwealth in respect of any tax, or any action or proceeding by or on behalf of the commonwealth in connection therewith, may be made, taken, begun or prosecuted in accordance with law, without regard to the provisions of subsection (a), unless prior to such assessment, collection, action, or proceeding it is ascertained that the person concerned is entitled to the benefits of subsection (a).
(e) Any individual who performed Desert Shield services and the spouse of such individual shall be entitled to the benefits of this section in the same manner as if such services were services referred to in subsection (a). For purposes of this subsection, the term "Desert Shield services" means any services in the Armed Forces of the United States or in support of such Armed Forces if:
(1) Such services are performed in the area designated by the President of the United States pursuant to section seven thousand five hundred and eight (f)(2)(A) of the Code as the "Persian Gulf Desert Shield area"; and
(2) Such services are performed during the period beginning on August second, nineteen hundred and ninety, and ending on the date on which any portion of the area referred to in subparagraph (1) is designated by the President of the United States as a combat zone pursuant to section one hundred and twelve of the Code.
(f) For purposes of subsection (a), the term "qualified hospitalization" means:
(1) any hospitalization outside the United States,
(2) any hospitalization inside the United States except that not more than five years of hospitalization may be taken into account under this subsection; provided, however, that this paragraph shall not apply for purposes of applying this section with respect to the spouse of an individual entitled to the benefits of subsection (a).
SECTION 1A. Section 5 of chapter 59 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 1988 Official Edition, is hereby amended by striking out the word "poverty", in line 417, and inserting in place thereof the following words:- poverty or financial hardship resulting from a change to active military status, not including initial enlistment.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect as of August second, nineteen hundred and ninety.