State & Local Tax Impacts of COVID-19 for Georgia – 2021

Thoughtware Alert Published: May 03, 2021 | Updated: Sep 09, 2021

Information current as of August 31, 2021.

COVID-19 has changed life across the globe. Many taxing jurisdictions are taking mitigating actions to create social distance and aid taxpayers. The following is a running list of actions by jurisdiction, which generally result in additional time to file and/or pay. Further, many jurisdictions have closed their offices to in-person use by taxpayers and suspended their audit and administrative functions. This alert doesn’t cover similar waivers from local-level taxing authorities. These developments continue to quickly evolve; check with your BKD Trusted Advisor or visit our COVID-19 Resource Center for current information as needed.

Information Specific to Georgia

  • Georgia legislation updated conformity to the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) effective for taxable years beginning on or after January 1, 2020. As such, Georgia has adopted the provisions of all federal tax acts that were enacted on or before January 1 with certain exceptions. The state has adopted the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan forgiveness and the deductibility of the related PPP deductions for all years.
    • Georgia H.B. 265, Laws 2021, and Georgia DOR, Income Tax Federal Tax Changes; February 25, 2021.
  • Georgia announced it’s automatically extending the 2020 individual income tax filing and payment deadline from April 15, 2021, to May 17, 2021, without penalties or interest. State estimated income tax payments due on April 15, 2021, aren’t included in the extension and are still due on April 15. In addition, no extension is provided for the filing, payment, or deposit of any other type of state tax or for the filing of any state information returns. Individual taxpayers don’t need to file forms or call the DOR to qualify for this automatic tax filing and payment extension.
    • Georgia DOR, News Release, March 19, 2021.
  • Georgia released updated income tax guidance stating that unemployment income remains taxable at the state level and must be included in a taxpayer’s income on their Georgia return. Georgia updated its IRC conformity date before the adoption of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 and its temporary changes to the taxability of unemployment income at the federal level. Because these federal provisions haven’t been adopted in Georgia, unemployment income remains taxable at the state level and must be included in a taxpayer’s income on their Georgia return. Any unemployment income that was excluded on the taxpayer’s federal return should be added back on Georgia Form 500, Schedule 1, line 5.
    • Georgia DOR, News Release; April 5, 2021.
  • Georgia legislation provides optional property tax relief to manufacturers due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The law allows manufacturers that claimed the tax year 2020 level 1 freeport exemption for specified finished goods the option of determining the fair market value of eligible finished goods inventory for the tax year 2021 exemption based on the fair market value of the inventory as of either January 1, 2020, or January 1, 2021. 
    • Georgia H.B. 541, effective May 4, 2021.
  • Georgia announced that for income tax purposes, taxpayers may subtract the wages that are disallowed federally if they claim the Employee Retention Credit provided under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act. The subtraction should be put on the other subtraction line of the subtraction schedule of the applicable return. The state provides 1) a subtraction when taxpayers take federal jobs tax credits and the expenses are required to be reduced federally; and 2) the term “federal jobs tax credit” includes those credits that by virtue of Section 280C(a) of the Internal Revenue Code require the disallowance of a deduction for wages and salaries. 
    • Georgia DOR, Income Tax Federal Tax Changes Notice; May 6, 2021.
  • Georgia updated its guidance on qualifying expenses for the Film Tax Credit. For a production that has begun principal photography on or before August 1, 2021, costs incurred during the COVID-19 shutdown qualify through November 1, 2021, only if 1) they are due to the COVID-19 shutdown; 2) they’re not reimbursed by insurance, the federal government, or otherwise; and 3) the production continues filming in Georgia. For post-COVID-19 costs (once the production company returns to Georgia), the Department has listed detailed cost categories and what’s allowed and to what extent. 
    • Georgia DOR, COVID-19 FAQs; August 2, 2021.

For more information, reach out to your BKD Trusted Advisor or use the Contact Us form below.

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