“TARDINESS OFTEN ROBS US OPPORTUNITY, AND THE DISPATCH OF OUR FORCES.” NICCOLO MACHIAVELLI
Filing an extension to file your federal and state income tax returns is fairly easy. You would have to complete IRS Form 4868 and postmark or e-file it by April 15th.
An extension gives taxpayers an automatic 6 month extension to file their tax returns. The new due date for your return will most likely be October 15th. Most states accept the IRS form as proof of extension for state income tax returns.
If you do not qualify, you can still use participating partners of the Free File program. It may cost you!
1). Do some math!
You will need an estimate of your tax liability. I know what you are thinking, “Who actually knows what that number?!?!” Your trusted accountant or tax preparer should know! Also, you can use the IRS Withholding Calculator to give you a round estimate.
2). Grab your W-2 and check copies!
You have to let the IRS know what you paid through payroll deductions and estimated payments throughout the year.
3). Cut a check!
If you file an extension and a balance is in fact due, send a payment along with your extension. An extension is a filing extension, not a payment extension or waiver.
Jéneen R. Perkins is a freelance accountant and consultant serving entrepreneurs, families and small businesses. She prides herself in being fluent in English instead of “Accountant-ese”.