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2021 Tax Extension Deadlines Approaching

Tax Extension Due Dates Are Coming Up for 2020 Returns

While individual income tax returns are normally due by April 15, the federal government has provided tax deadline extensions as part of its COVID relief efforts. This includes a general filing and payment extension for all individual taxpayers, as well as some special tax extensions for certain groups. This article provides information about extensions that apply to 2020 tax returns.

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IRS Tax Deadline Extension: May 17, 2021

This year, 2020 tax returns (Form 1040 or Form 1040-SR) were due by May 17, 2021 instead of the usual mid-April due date. This is a tax extension that applies to income tax filing and payments for the 2020 tax year. Any federal income tax payments that were originally due on April 15, 2021 were postponed until May 17, 2021 without interest or penalties.

“This continues to be a tough time for many people, and the IRS wants to continue to do everything possible to help taxpayers navigate the unusual circumstances related to the pandemic, while also working on important tax administration responsibilities,” stated IRS Commissioner, Chuck Rettig.

It’s unnecessary to contact the IRS or file any forms in order to receive this extension of time to file and pay. However, if you need an extension beyond the new May 17 deadline, you will have needed to submit a tax extension application (Form 4868) to the IRS by May 17.

RELATED: Missed the May 17 Deadline? File Now to Get a Refund & Lower Penalties

Estimated Tax Payments (3rd Quarter): September 15, 2021

It’s important to note that there is no tax extension for Estimated Tax payments. The IRS reminds people that September 15, 2021 is the deadline for 3rd quarter installment payments of Estimated Tax. This generally applies to people who are self-employed as well as some investors, retirees, and those who may not normally have taxes withheld from their paycheck by their employers.

Individuals not subject to withholding may need to make quarterly Estimated Tax payments. In most cases, taxpayers should be making quarterly Estimated Tax payments for 2021 if both of the following apply:

  • You expect to owe at least $1,000 in tax for 2021 after subtracting your withholding and tax credits
  • You expect your withholding and tax credits to be less than the smaller of:
    • 90% of the tax to be shown on your 2021 tax return or
    • 100% of the tax shown on your 2020 tax return (note that your 2020 tax return must cover all 12 months)

Taxpayers with income not subject to withholding (including interest, dividends, capital gains, alimony, cryptocurrency, and rental income) are normally required to make Estimated Tax payments. Special rules apply to some groups of taxpayers – such as farmers, fishermen, casualty and disaster victims, those who recently became disabled, recent retirees, and those who receive income unevenly during the year. For more information on estimated tax rules, see IRS Publication 505 (Tax Withholding and Estimated Tax).

RELATED: 2021 Federal Tax Calendar

Business Tax Extension Deadline: September 15, 2021

The tax due dates for businesses depends on the type of business entity. For 2020 business tax returns, the deadlines are as follows:

  • S Corporations – March 15, 2021
  • Partnerships & Multi-Member LLCs – March 15, 2021
  • C Corporations – April 15, 2021 (for calendar year filers)
  • Sole Proprietorships & Single-Member LLCs – May 17, 2021

If you obtained a tax extension for filing your 2020 business return, your extended deadline is:

  • September 15, 2021 for S Corporations, Partnerships, and Multi-Member LLCs
  • October 15, 2021 for C Corporations, Sole Proprietorships, and Single-Member LLCs

RELATED: Top COVID Relief Tax Breaks

Individual Tax Extension Deadline: October 15, 2021

If you got a tax extension for filing your 2020 individual income tax return (Form 1040 or Form 1040-SR), your extended due date is October 15, 2021. That means you will need to file your return (and pay your taxes owed, if any) by October 15 to avoid IRS penalties and late fees.

RELATED: 2021 Federal Income Tax Rates, Brackets, & Standard Deductions


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