How To File For A Tax Extension

If you are unable to complete and file your federal individual tax return by the April 18, 2001 deadline, you can request an extension of time to file. By filing for this extension, you will automatically be given until October 17, 2011 to submit your tax return to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

By filing an extension you are given an additional six months to complete and file your tax return. It’s important to note, however, that requesting an extension to file your tax return doesn’t give you an extension of time to pay any taxes that you may owe. Any amount that you will owe for your 2010 taxes must be paid by April 18, 2011.

In order to get a tax filing extension, you need to file Form 4868 (PDF) with the IRS. If you do not want to print it out and file it through snail mail, you can also electronically file Form 4868 through IRS Free File or Free File Fillable Forms. There is no cot to use Free File to prepare and electronically submit Form 4868 to get an extension, regardless of your income. The IRS will only provide an acknowledgement of your extension request if you e-file or Free File the request.

As mentioned before, a request for an extension is for extra time to file, not pay the taxes you owe. When filing an extension, you’ll also need to estimate your tax liability and pay any balance due by the April 18 deadline. If circumstances are such that you’re unable to pay the total amount that you owe, you should pay as much as possible and apply for an installment agreement. When you do get around to filing your taxes, you may want to use free tax software.

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One Response to How To File For A Tax Extension

  1. Gail says:

    I have never understood the reason for giving the extension to file yet still telling the taxpayer they have to pay their taxes on time. If you are able to estimate your taxes, why can’t you just finish figuring your taxes out also. I know we could never be able to pay our taxes without having filled out all our forms.

    Tax season reminds me a of Christmas. We all know it is coming (and when) and yet people panic about either lack of money (Christmas) or time (taxes). The truly frugal thing to do is take time out weekly or monthly to save, file and keep track of taxable and deductible paperwork for taxes so that when the new year comes around you have what you need and getting your taxes done should be an easy process. Just like buying (or making) Christmas presents throughout the year so that you will be ready when the time comes.

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