Coronavirus

IRS tax payment: is it possible to get an extension until 15 October?

The Internal Revenue Service says Americans not ready to file their taxes can get an extension, but payment is still due by 15 July.

IRS tax payment: is it possible to get an extension until 15 October?

The coronavirus pandemic changed this year’s federal income tax deadline and it was postponed to 15 July. Even though many states are surging in new coronavirus cases, which has led states like California to shut down for the second time since the outbreak, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) made it very clear that Tax Day won’t be pushed back again.

In late March, the United States went on lockdown to stop the spread of Covid-19, with only essential businesses remaining open. Since the majority of Americans were working from home, local tax offices were shut down and this led to a backlog of paper returns.

As the country shut down, the IRS announced in March that the federal tax filing deadline would be pushed back to 15 July, 2020. This gave Americans an extra three months to file their 2019 returns without paying interest or late penalty fees.

What if you are not ready to file this year's taxes?

The good news is that taxpayers who are not ready to file by 15 July have the option to request an extension until 15 October. All they need to do is submit a form requiring an estimate of their tax liability by Wednesday's deadline

If your form is approved and it indicates that any money is owed, it must be paid by 15 July or you might receive a penalty of 5% of your unpaid taxes for each month your tax return is late, up to five months. The IRS has some payment plans available if the taxpayer can’t afford to pay the full amount due to the pandemic.

The refund this year might be bigger than expected due to the three-month extension from 15 April to 15 July. Taxpayers issued a refund between 15 April and 30 June will earn 5% interest and those who receive one between 30 June and 30 September will earn 3% interest.