IRS Tax Tip 2019-132, September 24, 2019
It’s almost here…the filing deadline for taxpayers who requested an extension to file their 2018 tax return. This year’s deadline is Tuesday, October 15.
Even though time before the extension deadline is dwindling, there’s still time for taxpayers to file a complete and accurate return. Taxpayers should remember they don’t have to wait until October 15 to file. They can file whenever they are ready.
Taxpayers who did not request an extension and have yet to file a 2018 tax return can generally avoid additional penalties and interest by filing the return as soon as possible and paying the amount owed.
Here are a few tips and reminders for taxpayers who have not yet filed:
Use IRS Free File or other electronic filing options.
Taxpayers can file their tax return electronically for free through IRS Free File. The program is available on IRS.gov through Oct. 15. Filing electronically is easy, safe and the most accurate way to file taxes. Other electronic filing options include using a free tax return preparation site, commercial software or an authorized e-file provider.
Taxpayers getting a refund should use Direct Deposit.
The fastest way for taxpayers to get their refund is to file electronically and use direct deposit.
There are online payment options.
Taxpayers with extensions should file their tax returns by Oct. 15 and, if they owe, pay as much as possible to reduce interest and penalties. IRS Direct Pay allows individuals to securely pay from their checking or savings accounts. These taxpayers can consider a payment plan, which allows them to pay over time. For other payment options, taxpayers can visit the Paying Your Taxes page on IRS.gov.
There’s more time for the military.
Military members and those serving in a combat zone generally get more time to file. These taxpayers usually have until at least 180 days after they leave the combat zone to file returns and pay any taxes due.
There’s also more time in certain disaster areas.
People who have a valid extension and are in – or affected by – a federally-declared disaster may be allowed more time to file.
Keep a copy of tax return.
Taxpayers should keep a copy of their tax return and all supporting documents for at least three years.
Taxpayers can view their account information.
Individual taxpayers can go to IRS.gov/account and login to:
- View their balance.
- See their payment history.
- Pay their taxes.
- Access tax records through Get Transcript.
Before setting up an account, taxpayers should review Secure Access: How to Register for Certain Online Self-Help Tools to make sure they have the info needed to verify their identities.