Federal Tax Extension
If you need additional time to complete your 2012 tax return, you may request an automatic six-month extension to file until October 15, 2013.
The Internal Revenue Service requires that you request an extension of time to file whether you owe additional taxes or not. Generally, there are no penalties or interest assessed on zero balance or refund returns.
No interest or penalties will be charged if you:
- File for an extension by April 15, 2013
- Pay your tax liability by April 15, 2013
An extension to file your return is not an extension of time to pay your taxes.
If You Owe
To avoid interest and penalties you must have paid at least 90% of your current year tax liability by April 15, 2013 and submit your federal tax return by October 15, 2013.
Make your credit card payment to the IRS at the PAY1040.com website. Making your payment in this way automatically qualifies you for an extension of time to file your tax return until October 15, 2013. You will not need to file any other forms at this time.
Pay by Phone
Make your credit card payment using your touch-tone phone by calling Link2Gov toll-free at 1-888-729-1040. Making your payment in this way automatically qualifies you for an extension of time to file your tax return until October 15, 2013. You will not need to file any other forms at this time.
You can pay with Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover Cards. All payments are processed immediately. There is a convenience fee for this service which is paid directly to the company. The amount of the fee is based on the amount of your payment.
Pay by Mail
Along with the extension form, send a check or money order in the amount of the estimated tax due made payable to Internal Revenue Service. Mail form and payment by April 15, 2013. Get the IRS mailing address for your state.
Penalty and Interest Charges on Tax Owed
Those who do not pay at least 90% of the amount due on or before April 15, 2013 will be subject to the following penalties:
- Late Payment Penalty: If you do not pay at least 90% of your balance by April 15, 2013, you will be assessed a penalty of 0.5% of your unpaid taxes for each month, or part of a month, from April 15 until the balance is paid, to a maximum of 25%.
- Late Filing Penalty: If you do not file your return by the due date (including extensions), you may have to pay a failure-to-file penalty. The penalty is 5.0% of the unpaid balance for each month or part of a month that a return is late, to a maximum of 25%. If your return is more than 60 days late, the minimum penalty is $100 or the balance of the tax due on your return, whichever is smaller.
Request an Installment Plan
If you cannot pay the full amount due with your tax return, you can ask to make monthly installment payments. However, you should carefully consider the following:
- You must complete and file your 2012 tax return with the Installment Request
- An Installment Request is not an extension of time to file your return
- You will be charged interest and may be charged a late payment penalty
- An Installment Request typically takes 30 days for the IRS to process
- Acceptance of the Installment Request is not automatic
If your request is granted, you must also pay a fee. To limit the interest and penalty charges, pay as much of the tax as possible with your return. But before requesting an installment agreement, you should consider other less costly alternatives, such as a bank loan.
To ask for an installment agreement, use Form 9465, Installment Agreement Request.
The IRS must agree to accept the payment of your tax liability in installments if, as of the date you offer to enter into the agreement:
- Your total taxes (not counting interest, penalties, additions to the tax, or additional amounts) do not exceed $10,000,
- In the last 5 years, you (and your spouse if the liability relates to a joint return) have not:
- Failed to file any required income tax return,
- Failed to pay any tax shown on any such return, or
- Entered into an installment agreement for the payment of any income tax,
- You show you cannot pay your income tax in full when due,
- The tax will be paid in full in 3 years or less, and
- You agree to comply with the tax laws while your agreement is in effect.
You can make your installment payments by check, credit card, or direct debit.
To Request An Installment Plan
- Complete your 2012 tax return
- Prepare and attach Form 9465
- Choose a method of payment:
- Enclose a check or money order in the amount of the tax you are able to pay (There is a $105.00 fee if an installment agreement is accepted by the IRS; however, this fee may be reduced if your income is below a certain level (see Form 13844) or you make your payments by electronic funds withdrawal.)
- Use your credit card and make the payment through PAY1040.com or by phone at 1-888-729-1040.
- Sign up for Direct Debit payments through EFTPS (see below).
- Mail your tax return and the Installment Request to: Click here for a list of IRS mailing addresses.
Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS)
EFTPS offers another way to pay your federal taxes. Best of all, itís free. In fact, itís recommended for installment agreement payments. For details on how to enroll, visit www.EFTPS.gov or call EFTPS Customer Service at 1-800-316-6541 or 1-800-555-8778.
If You Do Not Owe
The IRS requires that you file for an extension regardless of whether you owe taxes or not. However, there are no additional fees, penalties or interest charges due on a refund tax return filed after the April 15 deadline.
For more information, visit the IRS website.