727·330·3500    ·    Denise Mensa-Cohen, Enrolled Agent    ·    Office Located in Clearwater, Florida
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The IRS has extended the time that farmers and ranchers have to replace livestock if they were forced to sell it due to exceptional, extreme, or severe drought. If you’re eligible, this may help you defer tax on any gains you received from the forced sales. The relief applies to all or part of 30 states affected by drought.

A taxpayer may determine whether exceptional, extreme, or severe drought is reported for any location in the applicable region by reference to U.S. Drought Monitor maps that are produced on a weekly basis by the National Drought Mitigation Center. U.S. Drought Monitor maps are archived at Drought Monitor maps.

In addition, in September of each year, the IRS publishes a list of counties, districts, cities, boroughs, census areas or parishes (hereinafter “counties”) for which exceptional, extreme, or severe drought was reported during the preceding 12 months. Taxpayers may use this list instead of U.S. Drought Monitor maps to determine whether exceptional, extreme, or severe drought has been reported for any location in the applicable region.

Here are seven facts you should know about this relief:

  1. If the drought caused you to sell more livestock than usual, you may be able to defer tax on the extra gains from those sales.
  2. You generally must replace the livestock within a four-year period. The IRS has the authority to extend the period if the drought continues. For this reason, the IRS has added one more year to the replacement period in 30 states.
  3. The one-year extension of time generally applies to certain sales due to drought.
  4. If you are eligible, your gains on sales of livestock that you held for draft, dairy or breeding purposes apply.
  5. Sales of other livestock, such as those you raised for slaughter or held for sporting purposes and poultry, are not eligible.
  6. The IRS relief applies to farms in areas suffering exceptional, extreme or severe drought conditions. The National Drought Mitigation Center has listed all or parts of 30 states that qualify for relief (see above). Any county that is contiguous to a county that is on the NDMC’s list also qualifies.
  7. This extension immediately impacts drought sales that occurred during 2010. However, the IRS has granted previous extensions that affect some of these localities. This means that some drought sales before 2010 are also affected. The IRS will grant additional extensions if severe drought conditions persist.

If you have any questions about whether you’re eligible for this particular tax relief, don’t hesitate to contact us.

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