Sam Johnson hosts wrongful convictions tax relief act conference

by | Jan 12, 2016 | Latest

WASHINGTON, D.C. – This afternoon U.S. Congressman Sam Johnson (TX-03) hosted a press conference in Washington, D.C. to build public awareness about his Wrongful Convictions Tax Relief Act, including the December 2016 retroactive relief deadline.

The Wrongful Convictions Tax Relief Act, which was signed into law December 18, 2015, allows wrongfully convicted individuals to keep their restitution tax free. It is supported by conservative groups including FreedomWorks and Americans for Tax Reform.

During the press event, Johnson also announced that today he is sending, along with Congressman John Larson (CT-01), a letter to Commissioner John Koskinen to ensure the IRS implements the new law without delay.

“As a 29-year Air Force veteran who spent nearly seven years as a POW in the infamous Hanoi Hilton, I understand what it means to have years of your life robbed from you,” said Johnson. “When I learned that folks who had been wrongfully imprisoned were suffering the additional injustice of having to pay the IRS taxes on their restitution, I wanted to do something about it. What’s so great about the Wrongful Convictions Tax Relief Act is that it is also retroactive – which is a pretty rare thing in the tax world. But that’s where today’s event comes into play. You see, folks only have until December of this year to get their money back from the IRS. That’s why we MUST hold the IRS’s feet to the fire. Our letter to the Commissioner today seeks details about how this agency is going to go about implementing this law. We are also asking for details about the Commissioner’s plans to make sure that wrongfully convicted individuals are aware of the deadline for retroactive relief as soon as possible. His deadline is February 1st, and you can rest assured I’ll be holding him to it.”

The full text of the letter is below:

“Dear Commissioner Koskinen:

“The recently enacted Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015 (Division Q of H.R. 2029) includes our bill, the Wrongful Convictions Tax Relief Act (Section 304 of H.R. 2029), which would prohibit the taxation of civil damages, restitution, or other monetary award provided to those who have been wrongfully imprisoned. This victory is long overdue and much deserved for these individuals. No longer will the wrongfully imprisoned have to suffer the additional injustice of paying taxes on compensation intended to help make them financially whole.

“As important as it was for this bill to become law, it is just as important that the IRS implement the legislation without delay. Of particular importance is the waiver of limitations provision. This provision allows for those who have been wrongfully imprisoned and who ordinarily cannot file for tax refunds due to the expiration of the statute of limitations to have the opportunity to do so. This is only right and fair. However, given that this opportunity is only available for just one year from the date of enactment, we would like the IRS to respond to the following questions by February 1, 2016:

1. How will the IRS implement the waiver of limitations?
2. How long will it take the IRS to implement the waiver of limitations?
3. How will the IRS communicate the waiver of limitations so as to enable all interested and eligible individuals the opportunity to take advantage of this one-time retroactive relief?

“And more generally:

4. How will the IRS communicate the overall change in law?
5. How long will it take the IRS to implement the change in law?

“With the tax filing season fast approaching, we strongly encourage the IRS to expeditiously implement this legislation. Those who have been wrongfully imprisoned should not have to wait a day more than absolutely necessary to benefit. Thank you for your attention to this critical matter.”

0 Comments

Related News

Collin County announces economic recovery plan

Collin County announces economic recovery plan

Collin County officials recently published the Collin County Recovery Plan, a 22- page document detailing the projects the county intends to fund using American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. Along with ARPA funds, the plan includes State and Local Fiscal Recovery...

read more
Women pedal into second act

Women pedal into second act

Serving on the PTA is a great way for parents to be involved and form new friendships, but those friendships don’t have to end when the kids head off to college. A group of Murphy women — all nearing their 50s — who became friends 13 years ago while serving on the...

read more
Fire department does ceremony for new engine

Fire department does ceremony for new engine

Residents and Murphy Fire-Rescue firefighters got a little push-y at the re station in the early evening of Sept. 7. But this action centered on a positive kind of pushing. Fire officials held a push- in ceremony to dedicate a new re engine — 191 — at the station,...

read more
City approves budget, tax rate

City approves budget, tax rate

Murphy City Councilmembers approved the fiscal year 2021-22 tax rate and budget at their Sept. 7 meeting. The budget year runs from Oct. 1 to Sept. 30, 2022. The approved budget was $44,472,286, a 7.8% decrease from the FY21 budget, officials said. The budget includes...

read more
Leadership Council accepting applications

Leadership Council accepting applications

Collin County Judge Chris Hill's office is accepting applications for the 2021-22 Collin County Youth Leadership Council. The office will accept applications until Sept. 24 for the leadership program that offers high school students in Collin County a unique...

read more
Remembering 9/11

Remembering 9/11

September 11, 2021 marks the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. On September 11, 2001, 19 militants associated with the Islamic extremist group al Queda hijacked four airliners and carried out suicide attacks against targets in the United States. Two...

read more
City announces two more West Nile cases

City announces two more West Nile cases

Two more positive tests for West Nile Virus have been found in Murphy, city officials stated in a news release. No human infections have yet been reported in the Murphy and surrounding areas. City officials, in cooperation with the Texas Department of State Health...

read more
Rodeo coming to Wylie

Rodeo coming to Wylie

 The Wylie Championship Rodeo returns to Wylie on Sept. 17-18 after taking a respite last year because of the pandemic.  Gates open at the Wylie Rodeo Arena at Wylie Ag Center, Hensley Lane behind Wylie High School, 2550 W. FM 544, at 6:30 p.m. both nights,...

read more