Tax Day: Procrastinator Resources

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Haven't filed those taxes yet? Relax. Here's some quick tips, links and advice that might keep you from feeling overtaxed.

You knew April 15th was tax day and the deadline to send in your 2009 tax return and a check to Uncle Sam. You meant to send off the return and didn’t or just didn’t have the money. Either way, you have until the end of the day to get it to the Post Office.

Here’s a video we just aired about why it’s important to file something, even if you can’t pay.

I grabbed my Flip camera and drove down to my Post Office, return and check in hand. Much to my surprise, at 9:30 in the morning, there were very few people there.

I was greeted by a pleasant worker who asked if I wanted to send my return first class. I looked at her with confusion and said, “It’s only going to the government,” and she got a chuckle out of that.

Anyway, I managed to stop a few folks to find out why they were sending in the return so late. I want to apologize for the wind. It’s really breezy here today.

Again, you have until midnight to have your return post marked or face late fees and penalties.

The extension.

If you cannot get that return in on time, you’ll need to file an extension. The IRS expects to receive 10-million extension requests, so you’re not alone. But, keep in mind, this is only an extension to file, not an extension to pay.

According the the IRS, “The extension gives you an additional six months, until Oct. 15, to file the tax return.”

Filing and Paying on Time Saves Money
If you have a balance due and do not pay by April 15, you are subject to a failure-to-pay penalty. But if you cannot complete your return and file it by April 15, you’re subject to an failure-to-file penalty.

So if you can’t pay the full amount you owe, you’ll still benefit from filing your return or an extension and paying as much as you can by April 15th, because interest and penalties are due only on the unpaid balance.

Members of the military and some others currently serving in combat zones can wait until after April 15 to file and pay. Those eligible get the extra time penalty- and interest-free without having to ask for it. Normally, the filing and payment deadline is postponed until 180 days after the service member leaves the combat zone. Victims of recent natural disasters, listed on IRS.gov, also have extra time.

Payment options.

The IRS has attempted to soften their image with the offering of payment options and plans. If you simply cannot pay what you owe, use the link below to work out a payment plan.

Common filing mistakes

To avoid delays in your return, the IRS has put out a list of ways you can make the filing process a lot smoother. Check it out.

There’s one group that needn’t worry at all!

If Uncle Sam owes you, don’t get caught up in the frenzy around April 15th deadlines. While you obviously should file to get your refund ASAP, you’re not going to be penalized for filing late.

Stacy Johnson

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