6 Last Minute Tax Tips For Late Fillers
If you have yet to file your taxes don't despair, there are a series of steps you can take to minimize the impact of a late filling.
Here are some tips to make sure you stay on good terms with the IRS.
1. If you can't make the deadline, file an extension.
If you can’t file your taxes by April 15, then you need to file an extension. You will need to fill out Form 4868 over the phone, online or by mail. The extension will automatically extend your filing deadline by six months to Oct. 15, 2015.
While an extension buys you more time to file, it does not give you more time to pay. If you owe the IRS taxes, you’ll need to estimate the amount and pay the balance on April 15. If the IRS thinks your estimate is too low, they might reject your extension and charge you a fee.
2. If you don’t owe, you still have time.
If you are due a refund this year and haven’t filed yet there’s no penalty for filing after April 15. Late penalties are assessed on the amount you owe the IRS, not how much you are getting back. So you still have time to file even after the deadline.
There is an exception to this rule. If you converted a traditional IRA to a Roth in 2014, you’ll have to file by April 15 or request an extension. But whether you file on time or get an extension, you have until Oct. 15, 2015 to either pay the tax or undo the conversion.
3. Get a payment installment plan.
If you can’t pay your balance by April 15 you can ask the IRS for an installment plan, which allows you to make monthly payments on your tax bill. However, this service is not free, you’ll have to pay a setup fee and you’ll also be charged interest that’s adjusted quarterly and a monthly late fee. If you need to request an installment plan, you still need to file or request an extension by April 15.
4. Stay calm.
If you are scrambling to finish your taxes by the April 15 deadline, try not to rush. You might overlook critical deductions that can lower your tax bill. Also, be careful not to input incorrect information.
After you have filled out your tax forms, carefully look over the identification or Social Security numbers for each person listed on your return. Double check your figures and then check again. Finally, make sure all the necessary forms are signed.
5. E-file your taxes.
Most tax filers chose E-file. Not only does filing your taxes electronically reduce your chances of error, it’s typically easier and offers quicker tax refunds.
And if you want your refund even faster, choose to have the funds direct deposited to your account. Those who combine e-file with direct deposit can get their refunds in as few as 10 days, according to the IRS.
6. Look for post offices with late pick up times.
You may choose to print your tax return and send it trough regular mail. If your return is postmarked by April 15th, the IRS considers it filed on time. Use the U.S. Postal Service Office Locator to find locations that will be open late to postmark your tax return.
Be sure to sign your return and include your social security number on each page of the return, so if a page is misplaced by the IRS, it can be reattached.
Although is best to file your taxes with plenty of time, having a back up plan in case of an unexpected delay can be helpful. Once you have fulfilled your obligations with the IRS, its time to start planning for the next tax year.
At GBS Group we can help you establish a sustainable plan and help you avoid penalties and late fees. Contact one of our trusted consultants to start your financial and tax planning for next year.