Tax Day comes Tuesday. Ready? Not everyone is.
Five days before the deadline, about 104 million taxpayers had filed returns and nearly 40 million taxpayers had yet to file, federal officials said. The Internal Revenue Service expects about 13 million taxpayers will not file a full tax return by the deadline.
DO: File for an extension by Tuesday, April 18. That buys you six months to file a full return by Oct. 16, 2017.
DON’T: Think this has no financial consequences.
“If you owe taxes, any payment made with an extension request will reduce or eliminate interest and late-payment penalties that apply to payments made after April 18,” an IRS statement says. “The interest rate is currently four percent per year, compounded daily, and the late-payment penalty is normally 0.5 percent per month.”
DO: Use IRS Form 4868.
There are three ways to request an automatic extension, the IRS says: 1. You can pay all or part of your estimated income tax due and indicate that the payment is for an extension using Direct Pay, the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System, or using a credit or debit card. 2. You can file Form 4868 electronically by accessing IRS e-file using your home computer or by using a tax professional who uses e-file. 3. You can file a paper Form 4868 and enclose payment of your estimate of tax due.
DON’T: Freak out.
“With the tax deadline approaching, taxpayers shouldn’t panic,” said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. “The IRS has many options available to help people as they finalize their tax returns or if they need to get extra time to file.”