Luckily we’ve got at least one life raft when it comes to taxes. The federal government extended the tax deadline from the traditional April 15 to July 15. This gives taxpayers more time to file under the stress and uncertainties of COVID-19. This was a great move by the government because there are many people, especially older folks, who rely on face-to-face methods of tax filing that simply can’t do that while under quarantine.
Though the deadline is extended 90 days, I still encourage you to file by April 15. Here’s why:
1. If you are due for a refund, getting it sooner is better, of course.
$1200 Economic Impact checks are guaranteed to be on the way, but why not maximize the amount of money headed your way? $1200 plus your usual refund can make a world of difference right now.
Also, the COVID-19 relief checks will come sooner if you have a bank account on file with the IRS. Filing your taxes is the best way to ensure you have up-to-date banking account information on file so you can receive the money quicker.
If you don’t have a bank account, Square has teamed up with the federal government to provide stimulus checks to people faster than it would to receive a physical check. Read more here. And if you don’t know if you qualify to receive a check, find out if you are eligible here.
2. If you owe money, giving yourself the most time to plan is the best scenario.
Owing money to the IRS is never a hilarious feeling, and that is especially true during a global pandemic.
The good news is that you don’t have to pay the price immediately. Yes, the deadline to file taxes and pay your taxes is now July 15th, but if you need even more time to pay, you can plan accordingly and set up an installment payment plan with the IRS. The IRS threw another life raft to taxpayers by announcing suspension of payments of all amounts due from April 1 through July 15, 2020; taxpayers will not be in default on any IRS installment agreement during this period. Interest will continue to accrue on these installment agreements.
3. Procrastinating, when there’s no real reason to, serves no one.
No matter what pandemic is thrown our way, one thing is certain: taxes will never be cancelled. Postponement of the tax deadline is, in fact, just that: a postponement. The time to file and pay is inevitable. So if time is on your side and you are capable of devoting the required attention to the matter, then resist the urge to procrastinate. Check taxes off your list and gain some peace of mind.
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