Missed the Tax Deadline? These Tips Will Help You

April 24, 2015
Missed the Tax Deadline? These Tips Will Help You

April 15 always seems to fly by, and the tax filing deadline along with it. If you still haven't filed your taxes, you're not the only one — but it's important that you take some immediate steps to avoid potential penalties.

1. Pay as soon as possible.

Though you might feel stressed about all that goes into filing your taxes, you must do so as soon as possible to halt the interest and penalties that are accumulating. IRS Direct Pay allows you to pay your tax bill directly out of your checking or savings account securely and without a fee. If the government owes you a tax refund, there is no penalty for filing late — but the sooner you submit your return, the sooner you'll get your money.

2. Use IRS e-file to submit your taxes.

Whether you hire an accountant or do your taxes yourself, you can use IRS e-file through October 15th. It's the safest, easiest, and most accurate way to file your taxes. You will receive a confirmation from the IRS that your return was received, and most refunds are processed within 21 days.

3. Pay as much as you can manage.

If you're unable to pay your tax bill in full, you should pay as much as you can upfront to reduce future interest and penalties. You can apply for an installment agreement with the IRS if you need more time to pay your taxes. The IRS offers an Online Payment Agreement Tool that allows you to set up a direct debit agreement from your bank account, rather than needing to mail a check manually each month.

4. Consider filing even if you're not required.

Even if the IRS doesn't require you to file and claim your income, you may be due a refund. This can happen if you had taxes withheld from your wages, or if you qualify for certain tax credits. If you don't file your return within three years, you could lose your right to claim the refund.

Do you need an accountant to prepare or review your taxes? Get in touch with us today — it's much easier and less expensive for you to make sure tax returns are accurate before they are filed, rather than fixing mistakes after the fact.

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Jo Ann Koontz

[email protected] 941-225-2615