While the date rarely changes, tax day has a way of catching up on individuals quickly. It's particularly challenging to make the April 15th deadline if you have a complex tax return, which is a common occurrence for freelancers and contract workers. Fortunately, there's a way to push back the deadline to give yourself more time to get all of your paperwork in order. Here's how to do it.
What's a Tax Extension?
Needing additional time to file taxes is a common situation for many people. To make the process more convenient, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) offers the option of a tax extension. The feature provides an additional six months to complete the necessary documents, moving the deadline to October 15th. The IRS allows individuals to request an extension in two ways—through traditional mail or electronically.
How to File a Federal Tax Return Extension
For mail extensions, you need to download and complete IRS Form 4868 by providing your name, address, and social security number. Completing this process also requires an estimate of your tax liability. If you haven't calculated the amount yet, determine a realistic number based on your total earnings for the year. Or, if your income hasn't changed drastically since last year, utilize the previous year's tax return as a guide.
Input the total amount of income tax for the year on line four and the total payments made thus far on line five. The total from line six is how much you need to pay alongside the extension with a check or money order. Once completed, the form needs to be mailed to the designated office listed on the bottom of the form before the April 15th tax deadline.
The IRS also accepts online tax return extension requests electronically. For the online process, you'll need all of the information required in the traditional format. However, you'll need to choose the style of tax return you plan to file and mark the designated extension icon. You also have the option to go ahead and make a tax payment.
Reduce the stress of tax season by requesting assistance from the professionals at Selph and Friday, CPA in Texarkana, TX. For over 30 years, the team has worked directly with individuals and businesses across Bowie County to tackle tax returns and IRS problems. Learn more about their tax preparation services online or request a personalized consultation today at (903) 792-0281.