How to efile a Federal, State Tax Return Extension online - Form 4868
Important: You can efile a 2014 tax return extension on efile.com until April 15, 2015.
What is a Federal Income Tax Extension?
A federal income tax extension is an extension of time to file your tax return. But, it is not an extension of time to fulfill all of your tax payments.
Any taxpayer can get an immediate 6-month federal income tax return extension by filing or efiling Form 4868. It is easy to prepare and efile your federal income tax extension on efile.com. The online software will generate Form 4868 for you.
Why Should You Prepare and Efile a Federal Income Tax Extension?
You may want to file or efile a federal income tax extension if you do not have all of your tax documents available to file your income tax return. So, if you need more time to prepare an income tax return, you can request an IRS extension deadline.
If you do not have enough tax information to prepare and efile an income tax return by April 15, 2015. you should efile a federal income tax return extension by that date. But, you will need to find out how much taxes you owe and submit payment for at least 90% of your balance due by Tax Day in order to avoid IRS interest charges and penalties. If needed, you can use the Free Tax Calculator to estimate your tax refund or tax liability.
Tax Return or Tax Extension: Which One is Best for You?
Before you consider efiling a tax extension, here is a common misconception about federal income tax extensions:
Myth: "Filing an income tax extension postpones your tax payments and your tax return filing deadline without penalties from the IRS."
Truth: "A tax extension only postpones the time to file a tax return, not the time to pay your taxes!"
Though you will accumulate penalties from the IRS for not paying your taxes on time, the penalties are much worse for not filing your income tax return or an income tax extension.
Tax Tips About Filing Tax Return Extensions
- It takes almost as much time to efile an income tax return extension as it takes to start and efile a tax return, so you may as well prepare your return with the information you have and efile on time. Even if you don't have all your tax information by April 15, you can amend your federal income tax return at any time. However, you have up to 3 years after the original filing deadline to claim a tax refund . Even if you do not have all the money to pay the taxes you owe, you should efile a federal income tax return or a federal income tax extension. The potential IRS fees and penalties for not efiling anything will be larger than on the taxes you owe. Therefore, you should file a federal income tax return or extension by April 15 and pay as much or as little as you can. The IRS will most likely add interest and/or penalties to late payments. Before you file, educate yourself about your tax situation. Try our free tax educator tools to find out if someone qualifies as your dependent, if you can claim the Child Tax Credit or Earned Income Credit, or if you can file as Head of Household!
3 Top Tax Extension Tips from efile.com
1. You should only efile a tax extension if you do not have all the information you need to prepare a tax return.
2. Do not efile a tax extension if you owe taxes to the IRS. A tax extension will not postpone the payment deadline!
3. Do not efile a tax extension if you have everything you need to prepare and file or efile your taxes. Preparing and efiling a tax return will save you time and money!
When Should You Prepare and Efile a Federal Income Tax Extension?
You should only efile a tax extension if you do not have all the information you need to prepare a tax return. Tax extensions for the 2014 Tax Year should be efiled by April 15, 2015, the same day as the efile deadline for a 2014 Tax Return. If you efile an income tax extension, your new 2014 Tax Return efile deadline will be October 15, 2015. After October 15, you can still start and prepare your federal tax return on efile.com, but you will need to print and mail it to the IRS.
Tax Tip: If you owe taxes, but you missed the IRS deadline to efile a federal income tax extension, you should efile your federal income tax return immediately t
o avoid further fees, interest, and penalties .
After April 15, 2015, you can no longer efile a federal income tax extension, but you will still be able to prepare and efile a federal income tax return past the IRS deadline. You can start, prepare, and efile a tax return on efile.com by Tax Day. Before you efile, you should know the amount of taxes you owe. Once your income tax return has been accepted by the IRS, you can make revisions to your return by filing a tax amendment and downloading Form 1040X. Be aware that there is no deadline to amend a federal income tax return. However, there is a 3-year limit on claiming federal tax refunds. If you efile a federal income tax extension, your new deadline to efile a Tax Return for Tax Year 2014 will be October 15, 2015.
Cannot pay all of the taxes you owe at once? Lear about tax payment options.
You missed the deadline to file an extension! What should you do?
At this point, is it best to file a tax return as soon as possible and pay as much as you can to avoid facing more late filing and/or payment penalties. However, you will not face any late penalties if you're expecting a refund, but you must file a tax return within 3 years of the original tax return due date to claim your refund.
You have not filed a previous Tax Return and want to file an extension for that return-can that be done?
Tax extensions are due on Tax Day every Tax Year. After that date, the IRS will no longer accept extension requests for that Tax Year. For example, after April 17, 2012, you can no longer file or efile an extension for your 2011 tax return.
If you have not filed a previous year tax return, we recommend that you file the return as soon as possible and pay
as much as you can.
How much do you owe in taxes? Choose one of these two options to know your entire tax amount:
1) Estimate your taxes by using the Free efile.com Tax Calculator .
2) Start and prepare a federal income tax return on efile.com. Before you efile your return, you will know whether you owe any tax payments based on the information you included on the return.
You should file or efile your federal income tax return by the time it is due, regardless of whether or not you can make a full payment with the return. Depending on your tax situation, you may qualify for a payment plan from the IRS .
What if I have more questions about tax return extensions?
Please contact efile.com with your questions or concerns about tax return extensions.
How Do You Efile a Federal Tax Extension?
Once you create a free efile.com account. click the green "Need an extension?" button on the "My Return" screen and follow the on-screen prompts.
What are the Possible IRS Penalties for not efiling or not Paying Taxes After the Deadline ?
Failing to file or efile a federal income tax return or a federal income tax extension can be costly. If you owe taxes, a delay in filing may result in interest and penalty charges that could increase your tax bill by 25 percent or more. Be aware that there is no penalty for filing a return late when a refund is owed except for the delay of your refund. However, if you do not file (or efile) and/or pay your taxes on time, you may face IRS penalties .
Important: Efiling or filing a federal income tax return and paying all taxes due by April 15, 2015 is the only way to avoid penalties.
A Note on IRS Interest: You might owe interest and tax penalties if you have unpaid taxes for Tax Year 2014 or a previous Tax Year.
Are There Penalties for Expecting a Tax Refund When a Tax Return was Not Filed on Time?
There are no penalties for failing to efile a tax return or tax extension if you expect a federal or state tax refund. However, if you wait too long to efile, you can lose your refund. Therefore, you must file your tax return within three years of the due date in order to receive your refund.
Cannot pay all the taxes you owe? Discover ways to pay off past tax debt .
What are the Requirements for Filing State Income Tax Return Extensions ?
The requirements for filing a state income tax extension differ from state to state. They mostly relate to tax extension filing deadlines, tax payment rules, or certain tax extension forms to fill out (or not, in some states' cases). However, many states generally follow the deadline to file a federal income tax return extension.
Can You Prepare and Efile a State Tax Extension on efile.com?
No, you cannot prepare and efile a state tax extension on efile.com. Your only choice is to prepare and file a state income tax extension on paper.
Then How Do You Prepare and File Your State Tax Extension?
At efile.com, we have state pages that have all the information you need to prepare and file a state income tax extension. You can find income tax return extension requirements for all states here.
Automatic Tax Extension for the Military
If you are a member of the Armed Forces who is stationed outside of the United States (and Puerto Rico) during the time of your federal income tax deadline (April 15, 2015), you will receive an automatic 2-month extension of time to file or efile your federal income tax return. June 15 will be your new deadline, but this deadline relates to your time to file your return, not your time to pay the taxes you owe.
If you are a member of the Armed Forces who is serving in an officially designated combat zone (or contingency operation) on April 15, 2015, you will receive both an extension of time to file and time to pay. This will be a 180-day extension, which will include the number of days you had left to file your federal income tax return before you entered service in the combat zone.
Automatic Tax Extension for U.S. Residents and Citizens Living Abroad
If you are a U.S. citizen or resident living outside of the country on Tax Day. and your main place of business is outside of the U.S. then you automatically receive a 2-month extension of time to file your return and time to pay any income taxes you may owe. Though you will still owe interest on any unpaid taxes after April 15, you will not be subject to late filing or payment penalties until June 15, 2015.
You do not have to file any forms to get this 2-month extension, but you will need to file your return on paper and attach a statement explaining why you qualify for the extension.
If you need more time to prepare and file your tax return, you can obtain an additional extension of 4 months (to October 15, 2015) by filing Form 4868. However, if you owe taxes, interest and penalties will apply after June 15.
What to Do if Your Extension Was Rejected by the IRS
If your extension was rejected before April 15, you can make any corrections and re-file the extension before that date so the IRS can accept Form 4868. However, if if was rejected on or after April 15, and you can no longer correct and re-file the extension, the best thing to do at this point is to start preparing and filing your 2014 Tax Return. There is no penalty for filing late if you are getting a tax refund. However, if you owe taxes, you should file or efile your tax return now to avoid the worst late filng penalties (even if you can't pay your taxes right now).
Tax Tip: File your tax return and make a tax payment as soon as possible.
Because your extension was rejected, the tax payment you set up did not go through. As soon as possible, you should make a payment to avoid IRS penalties. Here are two ways you can send a tax payment:
- Mail a payment with your tax extension (instructions are included in the form).
- Make an online payment directly from your bank account, or with a credit card or debit card. Find out how to make online payments .