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Tax Professional Newsletter 11/09/20

Tax Department response to novel coronavirus

We recently published a new page on our website entitled Frequently Asked Questions about Filing Requirements, Residency, and Telecommuting for New York State Personal Income Tax to summarize current New York State law and guidance regarding residency and telecommuting.

For the latest tax-related updates, visit Tax Department response to novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

Remind your clients to register for the federal Economic Impact Payment

About 538,000 New Yorkers haven’t received the federal Economic Impact Payment, according to the IRS. If your client is eligible for the payment, but hasn’t claimed it yet, there’s still time. The registration deadline to get an Economic Impact Payment this year is Saturday, November 21, 2020.

Eligible individuals must use the Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here tool by November 21, 2020, to submit the necessary information to the IRS.

Remind your clients that unemployment benefits are taxable

If your clients are receiving unemployment benefits, consider sending a message to them now so they will avoid a large tax bill later.

Here is suggested language you can use:

Unemployment benefits are taxable

If you are receiving unemployment benefits, consider having tax withheld from these payments to avoid owing taxes when you file your federal and New York State income tax return next year. New York State unemployment insurance benefits and any of the special unemployment compensation authorized under the Coronavirus Relief Act are considered taxable income. By law, the New York State Department of Labor must report these benefits to the IRS and to the New York State Tax Department.

We encourage you to review your records and, if necessary, adjust your tax withholdings. You can change your tax withholding option on the DOL website. Doing this could help you avoid a tax bill next year. To start or stop the withholding of federal or state taxes from your weekly benefits:

  1. Login to with your ID
  2. Click “Unemployment Benefits”
  3. Click “Payment and Tax Withholding Options"
  4. Click “Tax Withholding” and follow the instructions

Tax preparers and unpaid New York State tax bills

The 2021 tax preparer registration application and continuing education content will be available mid-November.

If you’re a registered tax return preparer and have an unpaid New York State tax bill, you must resolve your bill before we can approve your application to register for the 2021 tax filing season.

You can view and pay your bill through your Individual Online Services account. If you're unable to pay your tax bill in full, you may qualify for an installment payment agreement (IPA).

Reminder: Registration for the Employer Compensation Program is now open

Registration for the optional Employer Compensation Expense Program is open as of October 1, 2020, and ends December 1, 2020. For more information and instructions on how to register, visit Employer Compensation Expense Program (ECEP). To receive email updates about the program, subscribe to our Employer Compensation Expense Program email list.

Your clients may benefit by switching to the STAR credit

Did you know that your clients who are receiving the STAR exemption on their school tax bills may receive a larger benefit if they switch to receiving a check from New York State for the STAR credit? The value of the STAR credit may increase by as much as 2% each year, but the value of the STAR exemption savings cannot increase. The STAR exemption savings can never be higher than the STAR credit.

Here's another incentive to switch to the STAR credit by the end of the year: even though 2020 school tax bills have been issued and paid in most of New York State, homeowners who switch to the STAR credit by the end of the calendar year will receive any additional 2020 benefit in their 2021 check for the STAR credit.

Ready to switch? Register for the STAR credit.

To learn more about the potential benefits of switching to the STAR credit, see STAR credit and exemption savings amounts.

Keep up with tax changes

The Tax Professional Newsletter is a monthly summary of recent changes and new information. To receive updates as we announce them, subscribe to new tax topics as we add them to our Subscription Service. We’ll share links to new resources and tax tips as they become available.

Recently added topics include:

  • Cigarette, tobacco, and vapor products taxes
  • Medical marijuana and opioid excise taxes
  • Real estate transfer tax and mortgage recording tax
  • Alcoholic beverages tax and beverage container deposits

Upcoming due dates


Sales tax return for monthly filers


Corporation tax (New York C corporation and New York S corporation) estimated tax payments for calendar year filers


  • Sales tax return for quarterly filers
  • Sales tax return for monthly filers

Stay on top of due dates; bookmark our Tax Calendar.

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