With a little more than two weeks left before the income tax return deadline, the Internal Revenue Service reminded taxpayers of several important tax facts.
“The IRS receives a lot of tax returns in April,” said IRS Spokesman Raphael Tulino, in a news release. “So do consider the ease and convenience of e-file and direct deposit for your refund as the tax deadline approaches.”
Those who need more time to file should submit Form 4868, Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual income Tax Return to the IRS electronically or by paper no later than April 18, Tulino said.
Below are a few tax facts Tulino gave for taxpayers' consideration as the calendar turns to April:
FACT – The tax deadline this year falls on April 18 and not April 15 because of a District of Columbia-based holiday called Emancipation Day.
FACT – Taxpayers can request an automatic six-moth extension of time to file. With a timely filed extension request, taxpayers will have until Oct. 17 to file their federal tax return. The extension of time to file is not an extension of time to pay. Taxpayers who have a balance due will owe interest on any amount not paid by April 18. Taxpayers may also owe penalties on taxes not paid by the April due date.
FACT – Last year 70 percent of all individual tax returns were e-filed, and of the approximately 80 percent of taxpayers who get a tax refund, the majority of those are being received by the through direct deposit.
FACT – The IRS does NOT send taxpayers unsolicited emails about refunds, surveys or anything else that would get a recipient to provide their personal and financial information as a response. Fraudsters use the IRS logo in an email as a lure to trick unsuspecting victims into revealing personal information such as bank account numbers and passwords.
FACT – Taxpayers should pay no more or no less than what they owe. The IRS reminds people to take advantage of all deductions and credits available for which they are eligible to pay the least tax or get the biggest refund.
FACT – Those who file electronically and choose direct deposit can get their refund in as little as 10 days.
FACT – “Free” is plentiful. Free tax preparation is available throughout Southern California and Nevada through the IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program. The VITA option is for taxpayers whose income is generally $49,000 or less and have simpler tax returns. IRS Free-file is available from the IRS website for those who have incomes of $58,000 or less. Also, the Fillable Forms feature from IRS Free-File affords all taxpayers the opportunity to file a federal tax return for free no matter income level.
FACT – No matter who prepares a tax return, it is the taxpayer who is ultimately responsible for the information that’s on the return. Bottom line: For those who pay someone to prepare a return, choose that tax professional wisely.
Complete federal tax information is available 24/7 at www.irs.gov. Taxpayers can also call 1-800-829-1040 or visit a local IRS taxpayer assistance center for face-to-face assistance.