Third Stimulus Check: Last day to file taxes is May 17. File a tax extension now if you won’t meet the deadline
The, about a month later than it usually happens, due to the red tape. But that deadline is almost here and many Americans still haven’t filed. If that’s you, now’s the time to get your paperwork together and . And if you can’t meet the deadline? You can always file an extension.
Filing a tax extension is a good idea in 2021 especially, because whether you’reor not, your is the only way to claim from . How does filing a tax extension affect your expected “ ” for the ? We’ll explain below, but .
We’ll let you in on what happens to your missing stimulus money if you request a tax extension this year. Once you do file, here’s. We also have details about the , including , and (including ). And in the meantime, here’s what we know about a potential . This story was recently updated.
Filing a tax extension? Here’s what to know first
If you file for an extension with the IRS, that would change your due date forto Oct. 15. If you decide to extend your tax filing to a later date, you’ll need to file the extension no later than May 17, the tax deadline. Note that you’ll still have to pay the estimated taxes you owe by the tax due date. Otherwise, you accrue interest on what you owe, which you’ll eventually have to pay — plus other possible penalties — on top of your income taxes.
Waiting on a plus-up payment? Filing a tax extension could delay it
If you received your third stimulus payment based on your 2019 taxes, but you couldfor more based on your 2020 taxes, you may be waiting on a . However, until you file a tax return, the IRS won’t have your new income or dependent information on file. If you file a tax extension, it will further delay you from getting your full payment.
Can you claim missing money from the first and second stimulus checks if you file a tax extension?
Yes. But you should know the only way you’ll get your missingis by claiming a on your tax form — even if you’re . So the longer you wait to file, the longer it’ll take to get your tax refund, which will .
When will you get your tax refund if you file an extension?
The timeline for getting your tax refund — or your refund plus outstanding stimulus check money — depends on when you file. While you have until Oct. 15 to submit your return if you’ve filed an extension, it doesn’t mean you have to wait that long to file.
For example, if you file by May. 17 — that’s the last day to submit your tax return without filing an extension — you could receive your money as soon as May 24. However, if you wait until Oct. 15, the earliest you would get the money is Oct. 22.
See our chart below for more details on when you can expect your tax refund, which will include your missing stimulus payment.
When to expect your tax refund
|If you file on this date||This is the soonest||This is the latest|
|May 17 (last day to file)||May 24||June 7|
|Oct. 15 (last day with extension)||Oct. 22||Nov. 5|
You’ve got 3 options for filing a tax extension in 2021
There are three ways the IRS says you can file a tax extension:
Option 1: Pay all or part of your estimated income tax due and note the payment is for an extension using Direct Pay, the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System, or using a credit or debit card.
Option 2: File Form 4868 electronically by accessing IRS e-file using your tax software or by working with a tax professional who uses e-file. Make sure you have a copy of your 2019 tax return.
If you need to find a tax software service to use, and you make $72,000 or less, you can use the IRS Free File Online tool to find the best free filing system. You’ll need to gather the following information: income statements (W2s or 1099s), any adjustments to your income, your current filing status (single, married, filing jointly) and dependent information. If you make more than $72,000, you can use the Free File Fillable form.
Once you enter all your information, the IRS will help determine which option is best for you — for example, it could be IRS Free File Program by TurboTax or TaxSlayer.
Option 3: File a paper Form 4868 and enclose payment of your estimate of tax due. Make sure it’s postmarked on or before May 17.
For more tax information, we spell out the, and when you file your taxes.