As the July 15 tax-filing deadline − postponed from April 15 − draws near, the Internal Revenue Service is reminding all taxpayers who have yet to file their 2019 federal tax return to file electronically now, choose direct deposit for their refund, or pay any tax owed electronically.
Taxpayers who owe for tax year 2019 or need to pay 2020 estimated taxes originally due for the first quarter on April 15 or the second quarter on June 15 can schedule an electronic payment up to the July 15 due date.
The IRS continues to process electronic tax returns, issue direct deposit refunds and accept electronic payments. As of May 29, the IRS received over 133.8 million tax returns and issued over $250.9 billion in refunds.
Taxpayers should use electronic options to support social distancing and speed the processing of tax returns, refunds and payments. IRS.gov has a variety of options to help taxpayers.
Most taxpayers that usually have a filing or payment deadline falling on or after April 1, 2020, and before July 15, 2020 − including individuals, trusts, estates, corporations and other non-corporate tax filers − qualify for the postponed due date. This means that anyone, including Americans who live and work abroad, now have until July 15 to file their 2019 federal income tax return and pay any tax due. A list of forms due July 15 is on the Coronavirus Tax Relief: Filing and Payment Deadlines page.
File electronically for free
Taxpayers whose income was $69,000 or less last year are eligible to use IRS Free File software. There are also Free File Fillable Forms, an electronic version of IRS paper forms. It has no income limitations. Free File options are available at IRS.gov/freefile.
2016 file for unclaimed refunds – deadline postponed to July 15
For 2016 tax returns, the normal April 15 deadline to claim a refund is now July 15, 2020. The law provides a three-year window of opportunity to claim a refund. If taxpayers do not file a return within three years, the money becomes property of the U.S. Treasury. The law requires taxpayers to properly address, mail and ensure the tax return postmark is July 15, 2020, or sooner.
Choose direct deposit for refunds
The safest and fastest way for taxpayers to get their refund is to have it electronically deposited into their bank or other financial account. Taxpayers can use direct deposit to deposit their refund into one, two or even three accounts. Direct deposit is much faster than waiting for a paper check to arrive in the mail.
Schedule a payment electronically
Taxpayers can file now and schedule their federal tax payments up to the July 15 due date. They can pay online, by phone or with their mobile device and the IRS2Go app. When paying federal taxes electronically taxpayers should remember:
- Electronic payment options are the optimal way to make a tax payment.
- They can pay when they file electronically using tax software online. If using a tax preparer, taxpayers should ask the preparer to make the tax payment through an electronic funds withdrawal from a bank account.
- IRS Direct Pay allows taxpayers to pay online directly from a checking or savings account for free, and to schedule payments up to 365 days in advance.
- Taxpayers can choose to pay with a credit card, debit card or digital wallet option through a payment processor. No fees go to the IRS.
- The IRS2Go app provides the mobile-friendly payment options, including Direct Pay and Payment Provider payments on mobile devices.
- Taxpayers may also enroll in the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System and have a choice of paying online or by phone by using the EFTPS Voice Response System.
- Taxpayers can go to IRS.gov/account to securely access information about their federal tax account. They can view the amount they owe, access their tax records online, review their payment history and view key tax return information for the most recent tax return as originally filed.
Request an extension of time to file a tax return electronically
Taxpayers who need more time to prepare their federal tax return should be aware that:
- An extension of time to file a return does not grant any extension of time to pay taxes.
- Taxpayers should estimate and pay any owed taxes by the July 15 deadline to help avoid possible penalties.
- Taxpayers must file their extension request no later than the July 15 postponed due date of their return.
Individual tax filers, regardless of income, can use IRS Free File to electronically request an automatic tax-filing extension. Filing this form gives the taxpayer until Oct. 15 to file a federal tax return. To get the extension, the taxpayers must estimate their tax liability on the extension form and should pay any amount due.
Alternatively, taxpayers can get an extension by paying all or part of their estimated income tax due and indicate that the payment is for an extension using Direct Pay, the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS), or a credit or debit card. This way the taxpayer won’t have to file a separate extension form and will receive a confirmation number for their records.
For more information go to IRS.gov/COVIDtaxdeadlines.