Did you file an extension for your 2010 personal income tax return back in April? If so, here's some good news for you – you have a few extra days to procrastinate! Read on for details.
Normally, by filing Form 4868 by April 15, you get an automatic six-month extension of time to file your federal individual income tax return. But when any federal tax due date falls on a Saturday, Sunday or federal holiday, the deadline is extended to the next non-weekend, non-holiday business day.
In this case, since October 15 is a Saturday, the extended due date for 2010 personal tax returns is Monday, October 17. Doesn't that fill your heart with joy? Now you get an extra two days to scramble around and get your return done.
If you are sending your return to the IRS by good old snail-mail, don't forget that filing a return on time means that it is postmarked on or before the due date. So as long as you get it the post office by October 17, your return is timely filed. It is also wise to obtain proof of mailing from the U.S. Postal Service, so please consider spending a few extra bucks for that. If you are e-filing your return, you should you receive an acknowledgment of filing from the IRS within your software program.
One more piece of good news for procrastinators who are residents of the following states and live in areas effected by Hurricane Irene (Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico and Vermont) – the IRS has extended the personal tax return deadline to October 31. To qualify for this additional two-week extension, you must have lived in a particular area specifically identified by the IRS. Certain counties, cities and towns that meet this condition are listed on the IRS website here:
Regardless of when you file your return (October 17 or October 31), please remember that filing an extension is not an extension to pay any tax due. If you have a balance due on your 2010 return and pay it by the October deadline with your return, you will likely receive a bill from the IRS for late payment penalties and interest. You will not be penalized for filing late, because your timely filed extension excludes you from that. But you will be faced with penalties and interest for paying the tax late, because the tax was still due on April 15, even though you filed an extension for the return.
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