SACRAMENTO — The Franchise Tax Board recently announced special tax relief for California taxpayers affected by the winter storms in California.
The Dec. 17, 2010, through Jan. 4 storms were declared a federal disaster in 10 counties on Jan. 26. Affected taxpayers are able to claim disaster losses in the current or the prior tax year. Claiming the loss on a previously filed tax return allows FTB to issue refunds quickly.
Counties declared a major disaster area are: Inyo, Kern, Kings, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Tulare counties.
Taxpayers claiming the disaster loss should write “California Winter Storms 2010” in red ink at the top of their 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 2010 tax return at FTB’s Website, ftb.ca.gov.
Taxpayers needing copies of lost or damaged state returns should complete Form FTB 3516, “Request for Copy of Tax Return,” available online. Disaster victims can receive copies of tax returns for free. Print “California Winter Storms 2010” in red ink at the top of the request.
To learn more about disaster losses, refer to publications FTB 1034“Disaster Loss” at ftb.ca.gov or the IRS 547, “Casualties, Disasters, and Thefts” at irs.gov.