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Tips for Those Who Missed the Tax Deadline

Posted by Dan A. Moore | May 11, 2016 | 0 Comments

Did you file your federal income tax return on time?  Monday, April 18, was the tax deadline for most people in 2016. If you didn't file a tax return or an extension to file but should have, take action now. If you missed the tax filing deadline:

  • File and pay soon. If you owe taxes, you should file and pay as soon as you can, which will stop the interest and penalties that you will owe. The IRS doesn't charge a penalty for filing a late return if you are due a refund. The sooner you file, the sooner you'll get your refund.
  • Pay as much as you can. If you owe but can't pay in full, you should pay as much as you can when you file your tax return. You should pay what you owe as soon as possible to minimize penalties and interest
  • Make monthly payments through an installment agreement. If you need more time to pay your taxes, you can apply for a direct debit installment agreement through the IRS Online Payment Agreement tool. You don't need to write and mail a check each month with a direct debit plan. If you don't use the online tool, you can still apply on Form 9465, Installment Agreement Request. You can get the form at IRS.gov/forms at any time.
  • A refund may be waiting. If you are owed a refund, you should file as soon as possible to get it. Even if you are not required to file, you may still get a refund if you had taxes withheld from your wages or if you qualify for certain tax credits like the Earned Income Tax Credit. If you don't file your return within three years, you could lose your right to the refund.
  • Use IRS Free File. Nearly everyone can use IRS Free File to e-file their federal taxes for free. If your income was $62,000 or less, you can use free brand-name tax software. If you made more than $62,000, use Free File Fillable Forms to e-file. This program uses electronic versions of IRS paper forms and does some of the math for you. Fillable forms work best for those who are used to doing their own taxes. Either way, you have a free option on IRS.gov through the Oct. 17 extension period.
  • IRS e-file is safe and quick. No matter who prepares your tax return, you can use IRS e-file through Oct. 17. E-file is safe and easy. The IRS will send you electronic confirmation when they receive your tax return.

Credit: IRS Tax Tips, an IRS e-mail service on federal tax matters.

If you have any questions about late filing of tax returns or other taxation concerns, please contact us.

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About the Author

Dan A. Moore

EDUCATION Drake University, B.A., 1974 Drake University Law School, J.D., 1977 ASSOCIATIONS The Iowa State Bar AssociationState Bar of South DakotaWoodbury County Bar Association Dan A. Moore joined the Firm in 1977 as an associate, becoming a partner in 1982. Dan's practice focuses on, but is...

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