Tax Deadline: File Your Tax Return or an Extension by April 15

Tax Planning

Tax Day is less than a week away, though many will wait until the last minute to take action, hitting the e-file button at 11:59 pm on April 15! If you’re one of the last minute tax filers, you can go online and conveniently and affordably file your taxes – no appointment necessary.

If there’s no possible way you’ll make the tax deadline, as a last resort you can go online and file for an extension by April 15.

TT Extension Blog Post image 4.10.13

Filing an extension automatically pushes back the tax filing deadline to October 15, 2013 and protects you from the failure to file penalty which can grow at a rate of 5 percent of the amount due with your return for each month that you’re late, up to five months. For example, if you owe $2,500 and are three months late, the late-filing penalty would be $375.

Be aware that filing an extension is simply an extension of time to file, not an extension to pay. If you owe money for the 2012 tax year, you still need to pay your tax liability (within 90 percent accuracy) by April 15 to avoid paying interest and penalties on the amount owed.

Filing an extension does not stop you from incurring interest and paying a late payment penalty. You will incur interest at a rate determined quarterly based on the federal short-term rate, plus 3% compounded daily even if you do file an extension, which is why filing for an extension should not be thought of as a way to delay tax payments.

You will also have to pay a late payment penalty, which is one-half of one percent of tax owed each month or part of the month until tax is paid in full or 25% max is reached.

Even if you are unable to pay your tax liability in full, pay as much as you can with your tax return. You can even apply for an online payment agreement or Installment Agreement Request when you submit your tax return.

So, do you really need more time to file your taxes this year? Whether you’re filing your taxes up until 11:59 pm on April 15 or you need to file an extension, relax, we’ve got you covered. TurboTax makes it easy for you to finish filing your taxes, but if you need more time, you can file your extension online for free in minutes with TurboTax Easy Tax Extension. And, only TurboTax lets you talk to CPAs, IRS enrolled agents and tax attorneys while you prepare your tax return, free.