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Extending Your Individual Income Tax Return 2021

April 15 is the annual deadline for most people to file their federal income tax return and pay any taxes owed. By law, the IRS may assess penalties for both failing to file a tax return and for failing to pay taxes owed by the deadline.

Tax-filing extensions are available to taxpayers who need more time to finish their returns. If you cannot file your federal income tax return by the April 15 filing deadline, you can request an automatic six-month extension using Form 4868, Application For Automatic Extension of Time To File U.S. Individual Tax Return.

Filing this form gives you until October 15 to file your return. To get the extension, you must estimate your tax liability and pay any amount due. Remember, this is an extension of time only to file your return, not an extension of time to pay tax. All tax is due April 15. However, taxpayers who are having trouble paying what they owe may qualify for payment plans and other relief. Either way, you can avoid stiff penalties if you file either a regular income tax return or a request for a tax-filing extension by the April 15 deadline. You should always file a return (or extension), even if you cannot pay the full amount due because there is a penalty for not timely filing a return.

When to file extension. You must request the automatic extension by the due date (April 15) for your return. You can then file your return any time before the 6-month extension period (October 15) ends. When you later file your return, any payment made with your extension is applied against your total tax.

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