After Tax Deadline Now What
The tax filing deadline has just past. If you missed it, what should you do? Here are the steps you should take.
File your return as quickly as possible
Even though the deadline is over, you should still file your tax return early. In fact, it is because the deadline is past that time is of the essence. You will likely face a penalty on unpaid taxes and a late filing penalty calculated from April 17 so the earlier you file, the less you pay. However, if you can show just cause for missing the filing deadline, the IRS may reduce your penalties.
You should also file as soon as possible to get your refund. Don’t think you are owed a refund because your income is not taxable? Think again. Even if your income is below the taxable amount, you may be owed a refund due to the amount withheld from your wages, quarterly estimated payments or other special credits. If you are owed a refund, you may not be penalized but you need to claim your refund or forfeit it if you do not do so within 3 years.
What is likely to happen because you did not file is the IRS will bill you for taxes owed based on the information garnered from your previous tax submissions.
Check the status of your refund
Checking the status of your refund is easy. Visit www.IRSgov and click on “Where’s My Refund?”. You have to supply your primary Social Security Number on your 2011 return, your filing status (Single, Married Filing Jointly etc) and your expected amount of refund. Alternatively, you can call 1-800-829-1954 for automated refund information or use the IRS’ free phone app, IRS2Go, if you have a smartphone.
The most efficient and quickest way to file your tax returns is via e-filing. E-filing is still usable through October 15.
Use Free File is eligible
If you earn not more than $57,000 in gross adjusted income a year, you are eligible for Free File at www.irs.gov/freefile meaning you can file your taxes for free. If you earn more than $57,000 a year you can use Free File Fillable Forms and file your own tax returns.
Make installment payment plans
You should pay as much as you can with your tax filing. But if you cannot afford paying in one lump sum, the IRS is willing to grant you a payment plan if you owe $50,000 and below. You can obtain a payment plan agreement from the IRS website. There is a set-up fee of $105 but it can be reduced to $52.00 if you pay by automatic debit. If you are in the lower income group, your fee is only $43.00. You can also call 1-800-829-1040 to set up an IRS payment plan. Simply file Form 9465 Installment Agreement Request
Amend any errors in your tax submission
If you find an error in your tax submission like an omission of a reportable income or deduction or credit, you can file a Form 1040X to amend your submission. The form is available at www.irs.gov or by calling 1-800-TAX-FORM. But you should wait until your original return has been processed before amending it. You have up to three years to amend your tax return.