The IRS has pushed back the deadline to file taxes amid the coronavirus outbreak, from April 15 to July 15.
Carl Carlson, CEO of Carlson Financial, said the extra time could be a big benefit; many people are dealing with different working conditions they are adjusting to, spending time figuring out the unemployment system, or watching kids who otherwise would’ve been in school.
Life just looks very different for a lot of people, who could probably use an extra three months to get everything together. Maybe more importantly, Carlson said, they can delay paying any taxes and/or penalties that would’ve been due until July 15.
This also applies to those who pay quarterly: Their first quarter payment is not due until July 15 (though as of right now, the 2nd quarter payment is still due in June).
Carlson said he would not suggest delaying filing. He would still recommend at least preparing your taxes as soon as you can while things are still fresh on your mind. If you are someone that will owe money, this will tell you how much you owe and then you can use the next few months to save for that.
If you’re someone who will get a refund, the IRS is issuing refunds now so the sooner you get it in, the sooner you’ll get your money. Filing electronically and opting for direct deposit may also help speed things up, Carlson said.
If you’re someone who normally contributes to a Roth IRA, traditional IRA or Health Savings Account, those deadlines have also been extended to July 15, so you have some extra time to get your contributions in. Similarly, Carlson said if you owed a 10% penalty for an early withdrawal from a retirement last year, you won’t have to pay that until July 15.
As for state taxes, some are pushed back to align with the July 15 deadline, but Carlson said you need to make sure to check. Many states have changed their deadlines to align with the Federal tax deadline but check to make sure.
Carlson also said to have patience with your tax preparer.
“It’s very likely they’re working from home now and are also having to figure out what these new changes mean for your taxes. And since you may be emailing more documents than before, make sure you are sending it securely! Ask your accountant if they have a secure way to receive documents,” he suggested.