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.

Comments (15) Leave your comment

  1. Can I file another extension from Oct 15. I’m in remission from cancer and am now healthy enough to do my taxes for 2012

    1. Hi Griego,
      Unfortunately, October 15th is the final deadline for tax year 2012. If you feel up to it you can still file and if you don’t make today’s deadline you can see if the IRS will waive penalties based on your hardship. IRS closes e-file after October 15th for the 2012 tax year so you would have to paper file. Please see more information on hardships
      Thank you,
      Lisa Greene-Lewis

  2. After filing an extension online, should I receive a notification from Turbo Tax once it has been submitted? I didn’t see any type of notification in my email.

    1. Hi Christian – Confirmation emails are being sent starting today, April 16th. It may take a day or two before you receive it. Stay tuned. –Christopher

  3. Hello, i was doing my daughter’s taxes last night because she mistakenly entered all the data in the 2011 turbotax before she left for college 2 weeks ago and when i finished printing them i last night that’s when i realized the big mistake! I have to re-enter everything in the 2012 turbotax and the updated forms were not available at 1:00 am so i filed for extension thinking that i will not be able to make it Monday. Past 2 am , i was able to load the updates and was able to finish her taxes by 3:30 am! I was informed via email late this morning that her extension was approved by the IRS. I am ready to send her 2012 taxes tomorrow via mail. I can still send them and forget about the extension? Please respond. Thank you.

  4. Before reading this blog I was not very much acquainted about filing an extension. It’s good to know that after filing an extension I will get some more time to pay. Can you please tell me if I will file an extension today then how much extension can I get? Is October 15 is the last option or I can opt a date by my own?

    1. Hi – As noted above, an extension is only an extension to file, NOT an extension to pay. If you expect to owe tax with your return, then you must pay before April 15, 2013, to avoid a late payment penalty. The attached link has more information. Hope it helps! –Christopher

  5. wow, its almost tax deadline and I still have not received my refund, way to go IRS for dropping the ball, I am so glad we have an organization like yours helping us out, that was not a good joke

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