Many Americans experience increased stress and anxiety during the first few months of each new year. Gathering earning statements, calculating home office expenses and preparing to pay your tax bill can fill the approach of April 15 with an overwhelming sense of dread.
You don’t have to file your taxes this April!
Taxpayers underwent countless pandemic-related changes in 2020. The common business response’s shift to working from home paired with many organizations falling behind. You might say the IRS is no exception.
As a result, this year’s filing deadline has been extended to May 17.
Why does it matter? You decide.
If you already filed your taxes, no worries – the recent changes won’t affect you.
If you have yet to submit your completed documents to the IRS, you can decipher the pros and cons accordingly. Individual taxpayers who report W-2 income, as well as those who are self-employed, should consider factors like:
- You don’t need to file an extension to benefit from the delay
- The change doesn’t alter quarterly payments that are due April 15
- Penalties and interest won’t begin to accrue until after May 17
- Filing an extension is still optional, though without reprieve beyond October 15
- The changed filing date – and respective payment deadline – applies to any amount of money owed
- Additional time to process returns may make affordable tax preparation assistance more accessible for those in lower-income brackets
Corporations don’t qualify for the additional grace period. And naturally, you can’t expect to see any refund you’re owed before you file – whenever that is.
I know I can wait, but should I?
Your personal situation should determine whether you hold off on submitting your return. If procrastinating gives you temporary peace of mind, you have the right to wait to file. That said, if you’re still waiting for a stimulus payment, holding off probably won’t do you any good.
Sorry, companies – this one’s not for you
In terms of taxes, corporations are unlikely to benefit from these concessions. Entities whose fiscal years vary from the calendar year (and didn’t file by March 15) must plan to file as usual – within two months and 15 days of their year-end.
You can retain some semblance of control over your money if you choose to wait until the last minute to send in your return. But whether it’s in your best interest to do so? That depends.