Way back in April when you got an extension to file your 2018 income tax returns, you breathed a sigh of relief. Phew! Six additional months to file. Seemed like all the time in the world. Well, “all the time in the world” had passed and you are up against another deadline to file – by next Tuesday. No more extensions and no more excuses.
Two tips about filing extended income tax returns:
File by October 15th
It’s really down to the wire now. No additional filing extensions are available after October 15th. The mad scramble is on to get replacement copies of missing wage statements, organize your business expenses and scan your bank account statement for charitable contributions. If you really cannot get your business expense information organized as thoroughly as you should, use your best estimates and file a return by the due date. Then, finish getting those documents together and file an amended return. Failure-to-file penalties are expensive.
If You Still Owe
Even if you paid with your extension request, you could still end up owing more. If that’s the case, pay as much as possible with your return to reduce interest and penalties. Keep in mind that interest accrues daily on unpaid tax balances. It’s free to use IRS Direct Pay to securely pay from your checking or savings accounts. Can’t pay it all now? The IRS offers payment plan options, allowing you to pay over time. Details about all of these options (and their costs) are all found at the Paying Your Taxes page on IRS.gov.
Filing an extension in April feels terrific, until that six-month reprieve flies by and you there you are. Confronted with another deadline. Less than a week to go. No more excuses. Go ahead and get started. Maybe it won’t be as painful as you imagine. Need help meeting the October 15th tax filing deadline? Go to the IRS website at https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/the-filing-deadline-for-extension-filers-is-almost-here. Need more guidance? Consult a qualified tax professional.