Business/Mgmt & Tax Concepts

IRS Extends Deadline for 2020 Individual Income Tax Returns

March 19, 2021

The U.S. Treasury Department and the IRS announced this week that the federal income tax filing due date for individual taxpayers for tax year 2020 will be extended from April 15, 2021, to May 17, 2021. Further guidance will be coming from the IRS, but as of now the extension does not apply to:

  • 2021 1st quarter estimated tax payments
  • Trust and gift tax returns, and
  • C corporations with a December 31 year-end.

This extension is automatic, meaning that individual taxpayers do not need to file any additional forms or call into the IRS to initiate this federal tax filing and payment relief. For those individuals who will need additional time to finalize their returns beyond May 17th, an extension can be requested via form 4868, consistent with past tax years. The filing of form 4868 extends the filing deadline for individual taxpayers until Oct 15. It should be noted that an extension only grants an extension of time to file, not to pay, taxes due. Individual taxpayers can postpone federal income tax payments for the 2020 tax year until May 17, 2021, without penalties and interest, regardless of the amount owed. Penalties, interest, and additions to tax will begin to accrue on any remaining unpaid balances as of May 17, 2021.

Note that this federal extension does not automatically apply to state filing obligations. It remains to be seen which states decide to conform with federal law or uphold the April deadline. However, we do know that Oregon has extended its deadline to May 17, 2021.


More to come soon…

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