MoneyLife

When Do You Have To Pay Taxes? ( Tax Extension Guide)

By Laura Smith
when do you have to pay taxes

Federal Taxes are a necessary evil when it comes to living in the United States. If you don’t pay your taxes, you will face penalties and fees as a result of your inaction. In order to not receive a late-payment penalty or accrue any additional costs, you need to make sure that you file your taxes on time in accordance with pre-set deadlines! 

All of these deadlines can feel like arbitrary dates, but they’re actually mandated by law and enforced by the government. In this post, we’ll break down everything you need to know about IRS tax dates.

When Is Tax Day?

If you’re wondering, “When do you have to pay taxes?” the answer is on Tax Day. Normally the IRS Tax Day is April 15th, but this deadline was moved to May 17, 2021.

However, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, individual taxpayers who could not meet the April 15th must request a 6-month extension by October 15th by filling out Form 4868. You can complete this application via tax software, a tax professional, or through IRS directly. 

What happens if you owe taxes? 

If you owe taxes, it’s either because you didn’t pay quarterly taxes throughout the year or because you received funds from unemployment. To find out how much you’ll owe in taxes, start by sorting through your paystubs, purchases, and business expenses. 

Then, make it a point to pay the amount you owe to the government by April 15th. But if you can’t, don’t worry! You can always request an extension if necessary.

How long do I have to pay my taxes?

Although the April 15th deadline has since passed, you’re able to request tax payment extensions of up to 6-months in some circumstances. That being said, there are some key dates you should be aware of when it comes to taxes.

Tax filing deadlines

  • January 15th: Last 2020 estimated tax payment
  • February 12th: IRS begins processing e-filed extensions and returns
  • April 15th: First estimated tax payment is due
  • May 17th: Last day to e-file extensions and returns for taxes
  • October 15th: Last day to file a 6-month extension

How do quarterly estimated taxes work?

Every quarter, households can choose to pay estimated tax payments online or by mail with Form 1040-ES. Paying as you go can help you avoid problems at tax time. 

With quarterly taxes, you’ll be paying your federal taxes as you receive income instead of having to pay a more considerable lump sum at the end of the year.

What if I can’t afford to pay my taxes? 

If you have not been paying your taxes as you go, you might find yourself with a hefty tax payment due to the government when it comes time to file your taxes. Thankfully, there are many ways to ensure that you are paying your tax bill on time, such as:

  • Take on a second job: Freelancing or taking on a second job can be a great way to make extra money when you need it. 
  • Sell your assets: Selling your assets, like unwanted furniture and other personal property, is an option that might seem drastic. However, it might be necessary if you have taxes looming over your head.
  • Make partial payments: If you’re not able to make a full payment when taxes are due, consider creating plans to make partial payments. 
  • Take out a loan: If you don’t have time to take on a second job and you don’t want to sell your personal belongings, you should consider a Credit Builder loan from MoneyLion. You’ll be able to apply for a loan of up to $1,000 and the best part of all is that it doesn’t require a hard credit check.

How to get an extension 

If you find yourself in need of an extension, you’ll need to file the IRS document known as Form 4868 in order to receive a tax extension. You’ll be able to file this document either through an online tax program, via the IRS, or by mail. 

  1. File an extension online with the IRS: You’ll want to e-file for an extension through the IRS if you want to receive a six-month extension. To file with the IRS, go to IRS.gov and fill out Form 4868 electronically. Once it’s filled out and you file your request, you’ll have until October 15th to submit your tax return without accruing penalties or having your taxes considered late. 
  1. Fill out a paper form: To fill out the paper form for a six-month extension on your taxes, head over to IRS.gov and request to create an account. Once you fill out the information and open an account if you don’t already have one, look for Form 4868. From there, fill out the form and mail it to the IRS in a timely fashion.
  1. File through your online tax program: If you’re using an online tax program like TurboTax or H&R Block, the process of requesting an extension is relatively similar to the other options. When asked if you want to file electronically with the IRS, fill out Form 4868 and upload it to your account.

Stay on top of your tax returns and extensions 

As a citizen of the United States, you must stay on top of tax payment extensions and extensions. If you miss a deadline and fail to file an extension, you end up facing some hefty penalties and fines. 

Suppose all of this seems too challenging for your current situation and you would like assistance filing these documents electronically. In that case, 1040.com can help file your state and federal taxes and extensions for only $25!

No matter what, it’s crucial to stay on top of your taxes. Otherwise, you run the risk of facing problems later on down the road when tax season comes around.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do I still owe taxes after claiming 0?

You may owe taxes if your income level is higher than the income associated with a standard deduction

 Is it too late to file taxes?

No! If you’ve missed the deadline for 2021, you are still able to file your taxes through October 15th, 2021. Keep in mind that filing your taxes late could mean that you’ll incur a late-payment penalty.

What happens if you don’t file your taxes? 

If you refuse to pay your taxes, the IRS will eventually begin seizing your property, garnishing your wages, or taking other measures to retrieve the money you owe. Tax evasion is also a criminal offense that can result in a sentence of up to five years.

Sign Up
Sign Up

File your taxes for just $25

With 1040.com you can file your taxes for a flat rate of just $25!

Sign Up