October 15 is fast approaching. That’s the last day to file for most people who requested an extension for their 2020 tax return. These taxpayers can file any time on or before Friday, October 15 if they have all their required tax-related documents. They should also pay part or all their taxes since amounts owed after May 17 this year could be subject to penalties and interest.
Here are tips extension filers should remember.
- Use IRS Free File. Nearly everyone can e-file their tax return for free through IRS Free File. The program is available on IRS.gov through October 15. E-filing is easy, safe and the most accurate way for people to file their taxes. Filing electronically can also help taxpayers determine their earned income tax credit, child and dependent care credit, and recovery rebate credit. If someone is eligible for a recovery rebate credit – and either didn’t receive Economic Impact Payments or received less than the full amounts – they must file a 2020 tax return to claim the credit even if they don’t usually file.
- File to get a refund. Anyone due a refund should file as soon as possible and use direct deposit to get their tax refund electronically deposited for free into their financial account. . There is no penalty for filing a late return for people who are due a refund.
- Pay tax balance as soon as possible. The deadline to pay 2020 income taxes was May 17, 2021. Taxpayers can check their account balance or view payment options They can pay taxes online for free from a checking or savings account with Direct Pay. Those who owe taxes and can’t pay their balance in full should pay as much as they can to reduce interest and penalties for late payment. This IRS has options for people who can’t pay their taxes, including applying for a payment plan on IRS.gov.
- File by the deadline to avoid penalties. Taxpayers should file by Friday, October 15, 2021 to avoid a failure-to-file penalty.
- What taxpayers should do about a missed deadline. Anyone who did not request an extension by this year’s May 17 deadline should file and pay as soon as possible. This will stop additional interest and penalties from adding up.
- Different deadlines for some members of the military. Special deadline exceptions may apply for certain military service members and eligible support personnel in combat zones. MilTax online tax software is available to service members and their families, regardless of income, and is offered through the Department of Defense.