Everybody knows someone who is always running late, whether it’s for a social event, a business meeting, or a meal. Although this sort of conduct may anger you on a personal level, come tax time, it could have really serious repercussions.
The April 15 tax filing deadline can sneak up on you like a thief in the night if you’re the type who’s always late. Do not, however, let the impending midnight hour find you frantically filling out forms and racing to the nearest Post Office in an effort to beat the deadline. All you have to do is ask for more time.
Taxpayers who need more time to file their returns can request an extension of up to six months from the Internal Revenue Service. Don’t freak out if you haven’t finished your taxes by April 15th, especially if you’re expecting a refund.
The extension does not, however, apply to any money you may owe the IRS. Even if you don’t file a return, you still have to pay your taxes by the IRS’s established deadline. Filing for an extension and sending in what you anticipate you’ll owe will help you avoid late payment fees.
Who May Request an Extension?
An automatic extension of time may be requested by anyone, and the IRS will not inquire as to the reason for the request. If you are currently living outside of the United States and would like to inform the IRS, please note that the agency is only interested in receiving an estimate of the taxes you owe.
When filing for a joint extension, you must include both spouses’ Social Security numbers. If the IRS rejects your request, they will only get in touch with you. If they don’t respond, you can presume they accepted it.
Will an Extension Increase My Payment Period?
Unfortunately, requesting an extension from the IRS just delays the due date for filing the papers. For any financial obligations, the due date remains unchanged. At the very least, you need to make a down payment on your expected tax bill.
How do I request a delay?
There are three main paths you can take. The Internal Revenue Service accepts returns submitted electronically, through the mail, or by direct payment of any tax debt.
Remember that while the IRS takes a long time to process paperwork, it processes payments quickly. If you are late with a payment, they will notice right away.
1. Use an electronic filing
If your income is below $72,000, you can use IRS Free File to access a tax preparation service. When using this technique, submitting an extension does not cost anything.
You can use IRS Free Fillable Forms to electronically submit Form 4868 if your income is more than $72,000. You can either hire a professional or utilize trustworthy software like H&R Block to complete your taxes. Remember that there’s no need to spend a fortune on filing this paperwork.
2. Submit by mail
Form 4868 can also be submitted by mail. Make sure you completely fill out the application for the automatic extension. You may be subject to fines if the IRS rejects your submission. If you owe taxes, you can send a check, money order, or make an online payment.
3. Resolve your tax debt
In addition, you can submit your estimated tax payment and your real tax return at a later date. You can save the processing fee and have your federal tax payment taken directly out of your bank account by the IRS using IRS Direct Pay.
Taxes can also be paid using a debit or credit card, albeit there will be a processing fee assessed by the payment gateway. Taxpayers who remit the required estimated payment to the IRS by April 15 are automatically extended by six months, until October 15.
Remember that if you file for an extension on your federal income tax return, your state tax return may not get an automatic extension.
The process for requesting a tax extension varies by state, as do the necessary forms. To find out how to file a state tax extension, contact the department of revenue in your state or a certified public accountant or tax preparer in your area.
The Special Circumstances
By completing Form 709, taxpayers who anticipate having to pay gift tax this year are granted a six-month extension to do so, even if they do not need more time to complete their whole tax return.
Filing Form 8892 will grant you an additional six months to submit Form 6106; however, if you need more time, you must also submit Form 709 to be granted an extension.
Review Form 7004 with your accountant to see if you qualify for an automatic five- or six-month extension for filing additional returns, such as those pertaining to an estate or trust, a corporation or business, or information. When filing for an extension, you must remit the estimated tax payment just as you would with a regular tax return.
File for an extension, but keep in mind that you still owe the money. You should talk to the IRS about establishing a payment plan if you simply don’t have the cash right now. Typically, approval is instantaneous and monthly payments are accepted.
Finding out what happens if you don’t pay your taxes is not an option. Filing for an extension is only warranted if you require additional time to compile your tax return or if you are still awaiting the completion of certainly required papers.