The Department of Revenue’s Voluntary Disclosure Program encourages unregistered businesses to comply with Washington tax laws by voluntarily registering and paying prior tax obligations.
Benefits of the Voluntary Disclosure Program:
- The look-back period for tax liability is generally four years plus the current year,
- Up to 35 percent in potential penalties can be waived, and
- The Department can summarize the unreported tax liability in a single tax assessment.
To qualify, a business must have:
- Never registered with or reported taxes to the Department,
- Never been contacted by the Department for enforcement purposes (e.g., audit or compliance contacts regarding registration or reporting requirements), and
- Not engaged in evasion or misrepresentation in reporting tax liabilities.
Enhancements to the program
The voluntary disclosure approval process has been streamlined and standardized to ensure more efficient and consistent customer service. The following enhancements to the program are in effect as of March 4, 2014:
- Applications must be submitted online at www.dor.wa.gov/voluntarydisclosure.
- To expedite the approval process, applicants (businesses) must provide specific information regarding their eligibility and business activities at the time of application.
- Applicants are encouraged to disclose their identity when they apply. Those who don’t disclose their identity must do so within 15 calendar days of the application date. If not, their application will not be approved and they will not be protected from potential discovery by the Department.
- Once approved for voluntary disclosure, the applicant has 30 calendar days from the date of application to secure a signed Voluntary Disclosure Agreement.
- If the signed agreement is not returned within the 30-day window, the application will not be approved and the applicant could be subject to tax, penalties, and interest for an extended look-back period.
Information about the program and the online application are available at dor.wa.gov/voluntarydisclosure.
For more information about the Voluntary Disclosure Program, call (360) 704-5649 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.