Santa Clara County residents get six-month tax extension
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Library in downtown San Jose is one of the locations where low-income residents can receive free tax preparation services. File photo.

    For most of the country taxes are due tomorrow, but Santa Clara County residents will have more time to file taxes after the onslaught of winter storms that were deemed disasters.

    County residents and people in 54 other counties across California have until Oct. 16 to file their state and federal taxes due to damage caused by floods, landslides and continuous rainfall. Residents in Lassen, Modoc and Shasta counties will still need to file taxes by Tuesday, since they were not designated as disaster counties by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

    “Even if you and me were lucky enough to not be affected by the flooding much, we still have the extra time,” Raphael Tulino, spokesperson for the Internal Revenue Service, told San José Spotlight.

    Even if residents didn’t personally suffer from the storms, they can still benefit from the extended deadline, Tulino said. They only need to live in Santa Clara County or one of the 54 other state counties entitled to an extension.

    Last month, California followed the federal government’s lead and extended the deadline to file state taxes.

    “As communities across the state continue recovering from the damage caused by the winter storms, California is working swiftly to help recovering Californians get back on their feet,” Gov. Gavin Newsom said in a statement.

    As of last month, more than a dozen San Jose parks remained closed due to damage caused by the winter storms. By January, rainfall had filled Almaden and Uvas reservoirs and Coyote Lake beyond their capacities, according to Valley Water spokesperson Matt Keller. The storms also displaced a number of homeless residents living along Coyote Creek.

    Amigos de Guadalupe, a local nonprofit that helps families in East San Jose, is offering free tax preparation services on every Saturday through May 6 between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. No appointment is needed; residents need only bring their identification and tax documents with them to the nonprofit’s office at 1897 Alum Rock Ave. to obtain help.

    San Jose’s Pearl Avenue Branch Library is also offering free tax preparation services on Wednesday evenings through May 10 for lower-income residents.

    “Every year, the San Jose Public Library provides free tax help for individuals and families who earn less than $60,000 per year,” Elizabeth Castañeda, spokesperson for the library, told San José Spotlight. “This year, we partnered with VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) and Tax-Aid to offer free basic tax return preparation at several locations.”

    In addition, Sacred Heart Community Service is also offering free tax preparation services on May 13, June 10 and July 8, according to United Way Bay Area.

    Find other free tax prep services in Santa Clara County.

    Contact Sonya Herrera at [email protected] or follow @SMHsoftware on Twitter.

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