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With Less Than a Week Until the Tax Filing Deadline, Taxpayers Can Get Extra Time to File

 

IR-2014-49, April 10, 2014

WASHINGTON — The IRS has received almost 100 million tax returns so far this year and expects to receive about 35 million more by the April 15 filing deadline. However, about 12 million taxpayers will have requested extensions by the filing deadline, giving them an extra 6 months to file.

The fastest and easiest way to get the extra time is through the Free File link on IRS.gov. In a matter of minutes, anyone, regardless of income, can use this free service to electronically request an automatic tax-filing extension on Form 4868.

Filing this form gives taxpayers until Oct. 15 to file a return. To get the extension, taxpayers must estimate their tax liability on this form and should also pay any amount due.

By properly filing this form, a taxpayer will avoid the late-filing penalty, normally five percent per month based on the unpaid balance, that applies to returns filed after the deadline. In addition, any payment made with an extension request will reduce or eliminate interest and late-payment penalties that apply to payments made after April 15. The interest rate is currently three percent per year, compounded daily, and the late-payment penalty is normally 0.5 percent per month.

Besides Free File, taxpayers can choose to request an extension through a paid tax preparer, using tax-preparation software or by filing a paper Form 4868, available on IRS.gov. Of the more than 12 million extension forms received by the IRS last year, over 7 million were filed electronically.

[The filing season statistics table follows.]

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2014 FILING SEASON STATISTICS

Cumulative statistics comparing 4/05/13 and 4/04/14

Individual Income Tax Returns:

2013

2014

% Change

Total Receipts

99,131,000

99,850,000

.7

Total Processed

93,103,000

98,170,000

5.4

 

 

 

 

E-filing Receipts:

 

 

 

TOTAL           

88,638,000

90,306,000

1.9

Tax Professionals

54,673,000

54,295,000

-0.7

Self-prepared

33,964,000

36,011,000

6.0

 

 

 

 

Web Usage:

 

 

 

Visits to IRS.gov

261,597,162

235,961,315

-9.8

 

 

 

 

Total Refunds:

 

 

 

Number

77,849,000

78,769,000

1.2

Amount

$214.487

billion

$219.936

billion

2.5

Average refund

$2,755

$2,792

1.3

 

 

 

 

Direct Deposit Refunds:

 

 

 

Number

65,020,000

65,326,000

0.5

Amount

$190.752

billion

$190.934

billion

0.1

Average refund

$2,934

$2,923

-0.4

 

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 10-Apr-2014