Trump Requested Extension to File Financial Disclosure Because Report's 'Complicated' and He's Been Busy, Official Says

President Donald Trump's focus on responding to the coronavirus pandemic is part of the reason his annual financial disclosure report missed its first two deadlines, a White House official told The New York Times on Wednesday.

The report was due on May 15, but the Office of Government Ethics said in April it offered both the president and Vice President Mike Pence 45-day extensions due to the pandemic. If requested, the office said it would also consider granting a second 45-day extension, which would push the final deadline to August 13.

The OGE's records show that Pence's report was filed by the end of the first extension and shared publicly on June 30. Trump plans to file his report "as soon as possible," the White House official told the paper, adding that the president received approval for a second extension to pull the "complicated" report together.

Newsweek reached out to the White House for comment but did not receive a response in time for publication.

President Donald Trump
President Donald Trump speaks during an event with students, teachers and administrators about how to safely reopen schools during the novel coronavirus pandemic in the East Room at the White House July 7, 2020 in Washington, D.C. On Wednesday, White House officials told The New York Times this week that the president was planning to file his annual financial disclosure report "as soon as possible" after missing the first two deadlines. Chip Somodevilla/Getty

According to the OGE's website, an estimated 26,000 officials are required to file the annual report, which includes how much income they have and how they received it, to determine any potential conflicts of interest their financial backgrounds might pose to their positions in government. The OGE said it reviews about 1,100 of those—mostly the reports submitted by top officials and nominees for ranking positions—with the remaining reports reviewed by each individual's agency.

In light of the pandemic, the OGE said in early April it would not grant a blanket filing extension but said officials could apply for extensions on an individual basis. On April 23, the designated ethics officials for the president and vice president issued a memorandum stating both Trump and Pence had received approvals for an initial 45-day extension due to the impact the pandemic had on those working within the White House.

"Efforts to respond to the pandemic have required staff members to work long hours to address the health and economic consequences impacting all Americans," the memorandum read. The national tax filing deadline extension and temporary closures of accounting offices and other businesses responsible for managing financial documents were also mentioned as factors in the decision to approve the first filing extension.

The OGE told Newsweek it could not discuss any individuals who either have filed or have yet to file their annual financial disclosure reports and declined to comment further.

The availability of Trump's financial information has been a point of contention for years. While most presidential candidates release their tax returns before the general election in which they are running, Trump never did and has resisted releasing his tax returns ever since.

Though the financial disclosure report required by the OGE offers an annual glimpse into the president's financial situation, a decision by the Supreme Court on Thursday suggested those reports may not be alone for long when it ruled Trump must turn over his tax returns and other financial documents to a prosecutor conducting a criminal investigation in New York.

This article has been updated with a response from the Office of Government Ethics.