At times a taxpayer may not be able to gather the
information and forms required to file tax returns before the April 15
filing deadline. The IRS has provided for this situation by permitting a
request for an automatic extension of time to file. Form 4868, when
filed with the information it requires, automatically extends the filing
deadline to October 15. [Note that extending the filing deadline does not extend the tax payment deadline, which remains as April 15. That is, all taxes due should be postmarked no later than 4/15 to avoid penalty for late payment. The check paying taxes due should be included with form 4868.]
Many U.S. states that have an income tax have
similar provisions for themselves, since many of them require
information from the federal return to be included in their own returns.
Use of Form 4868 requires that it be filed on or before the April 15 filing deadline. The form also requires that any unpaid tax must be paid with the filing of Form
4868. If tax is not paid when due, then a ten percent penalty will be assessed, and interest may also be charged the taxpayer.
While the Tax Assistance Program will
assist with the filing of Form 4868, it recommends that all returns be
completed and filed by the normal April 15 filing due date. Most, but not all, TAP
tax clients do receive refunds of excess taxes collected.
To reduce the risk of possible penalty, for those requesting it, the TAP will:
Complete Form 4868 upon presentation of all forms evidencing income earned (W-2 and other forms).
Calculate whether tax withholdings are sufficient to pay the projected tax due in full. [Click here to view or print a copy of the tax calculation worksheet with example.]
If withholdings are insufficient, then taxpayer will be asked to write a check payable to the U. S. Treasury in an amount large enough to cover the tax deficiency. That check must be included with the filing of Form 4868. [Click here to view or print a copy of the statement showing how to prepare the check you will send to the governments.]