Get all your ducks in a row this tax season.
April is great. Spring has sprung. The snow has melted. And you’ve just remembered….you still need to file your 2015 tax return!
The tax filing deadline is April 18th, 2016.
This is not a typo. You get 3 extra days this year to e-file your tax return with the IRS. Why is that, you ask? If the typical April 15th deadline just so happens to fall on a weekend (including Friday), the IRS will push it back to the following Monday. Hence, April 18th.
Expecting a refund?
If an excess amount of federal taxes were withheld from your paychecks this year, then you can expect a refund from the IRS. The deadline still applies to you and you still need to file a tax return. However, if you don’t e-file by April 18th, you won’t face any penalties from the IRS. In fact, you can claim your 2015 tax refund until 2019 thanks to the three-year statute of limitations!
If you’re not ready, file an extension.
Even if you can’t file your actual tax return by April 18th and you have a tax liability, you can file your 2015 tax extension with RapidTax for free. This will give you until October 17th, 2016 to e-file your tax return, penalty-free.
When filing an extension, you will need to estimate your tax liability and pay a small amount towards it. Even $5 will do (it’s all about showing initiative here).
Oh, the penalties you’ll face for not filing (and paying) on time.
Miss curfew? Get a lecture from mom. Late to a meeting? Get reprimanded by your boss. Miss the tax filing deadline? Get penalty fees tacked onto your tax bill by the IRS. Below is a breakdown of what the IRS will charge you if you don’t file your taxes by April 18th (or October 17th with an extension).
- You’ll pay an additional 5% of the taxes owed amount for every month your return is late. This will max out at 25%.
- After 2 consecutive months have passed since the due date, the minimum penalty fee will be the lesser of $135 or 100% of your unpaid tax.
And if you don’t pay on time…
- You’ll pay a penalty of ½ of 1 percent of your unpaid taxes for each month or part of a month after the due date. This starts accruing the day after the tax-filing due date.
Something to keep in the back of your mind – the failure-to-file penalty can be ten times higher than the failure-to-pay penalty. Don’t delay filing just because you know you won’t be able to pay your bill on time. You want to choose the lesser of two evils.
So why are you still waiting?
Is there a reason that you’re not preparing your tax return today? If you have your income statements handy, you can get started right now. You could even have it finished by tonight and not have to worry about penalty fees or deadlines! Create an account with RapidTax and get started.
Image via DuckLover Bonnie on flickr.