IRS Gives Taxpayers More Time to Pay

Man working on taxes
Photo by Syda Productions /

March 21 update: The IRS has announced officially that the deadlines for both filing and paying have been extended to July 15.

March 18 update: Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin clarified this morning that the federal government is giving taxpayers an extra 90 days to pay any 2019 taxes they might owe but is not giving them more time to file their 2019 tax returns, CNBC reports. So, you still must file your federal tax return by April 15.

Trying to fight the new coronavirus with one hand while paging through tax documents with the other? Now, you can turn 100% of your attention toward the virus, as you should.

Americans will get a 90-day extension of their tax deadline — to July 15 — due to the threat posed by COVID-19, the federal government announced Tuesday.

During a press conference, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said filers will have an extra 90 days to pay federal income taxes due on up to $1 million in taxes owed, CNBC reports. No interest or penalties will be owed until after July 15.

Most years, taxes are due by April 15. The extension should give millions plenty of time to crunch the numbers and file a return.

Still, if you expect a refund, you may not want to take advantage of the extension: The sooner you file your return, the sooner you can receive your refund.

Also, note that the extension announced Tuesday only applies to federal income taxes. If your state collects income taxes, don’t assume its deadline is the same as that of Uncle Sam. Check with your state’s income tax collecting agency, which you can find listed on the IRS’ “Government Sites” webpage.

The best online tax software

If you’ve never used online tax software in the past, this is the perfect year to give it a try. Health officials and the federal government are encouraging people to avoid face-to-face contact whenever possible.

Online tax preparation software is a great way to keep from having to sit face-to-face with an accountant.

And there are plenty of options available. In “The 5 Best Tax Software Programs for 2020,” we outline some of your best choices. They include:

Some of these services even allow you to do your taxes for free. You can find more gratis preparation options in “How to Get Your Taxes Done Absolutely Free.”

Will you take advantage of this year’s tax deadline extension? Let us know in comments below or on our Facebook page.

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