What Happens if You Miss the Tax Deadline? Taxes, Penalties & Fees, Oh My!

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Missed Tax Deadline Penalties & Fees
Tax Day is right around the corner, and if you have already filed your taxes, that means you can relax – tax season is over until next year! But if you didn’t file your taxes or didn’t file a tax extension, then this article is for you! Let’s take a look at what happens if…

Tax Day is right around the corner, and if you have already filed your taxes, that means you can relax – tax season is over until next year! But if you didn’t file your taxes or didn’t file a tax extension, then this article is for you!

Let’s take a look at what happens if you missed the tax deadline, how you can file an extension, what happens when you don’t file your taxes and you owe money (penalties and fees!), and available options if you can’t pay your taxes.

Don’t  Miss the Tax Deadline!

Let’s start with the most common situation, and the easiest to avoid – missing the deadline to file taxes. There are many reasons you may not be ready to file your taxes yet – including waiting on forms or financial information, big life events, travel, etc.

The reason doesn’t matter too much, as long as you take action. If you think you might miss the tax deadline, then you should immediately file for a tax extension. It’s free and easy.


How to file for a tax deadline extension. Everyone is eligible for an automatic tax deadline extension and the first thing you should do if you missed the tax filing deadline is file for an extension with the IRS. This gives you until October 15th to file your taxes.

However, you should also know that if you owe the IRS money, it is due on April 15th. So even if you file for a tax deadline extension, you need to send in an estimate of the taxes you owe. Failure to do so can result in fines or penalties. (There are no penalties or fees for not filing for an extension if you don’t owe the IRS any money).

You can file for a free tax deadline extension through these means:

Since the tax filing deadline is already close at hand, time is of the essence here, and I would recommend filing electronically if possible.

TurboTax is Easy, Free Edition, Fast Refund

What Happens if You Miss the Tax Deadline?

Again, there are no problems if you don’t owe the IRS any money. But it’s still a good idea to file your tax return—especially if you are due a refund.

The IRS won’t send your refund if you don’t file your taxes. And the longer you wait to file, the longer you wait to receive your refund.

If you owe the IRS money, then you want to do three things: file your extension as mentioned above, make any estimated payments if you have a rough estimate of how much you might owe, then file your return before the October 15 deadline.

Remember, your tax payments are due on the tax deadline (April 15th most years). So if you missed the deadline to file, you should send in a payment for the estimated amount of taxes you owe, otherwise, you may owe penalties.

What Happens If You Don’t File Your Tax Return?

OK, so you missed the deadline and you haven’t filed for an extension. What happens if you let it slide? Penalties and interest, my friend. And they aren’t pretty!

Failure to pay and failure to file penalties. These two types of penalties are automatically assessed by the IRS. Here is a rough outline of the penalties you may owe for failure to file or pay your federal taxes.

  • Failure to file or (FTF) penalty assessed at 5% per month or partial month up to a 25% maximum.
  • Failure to pay (FTP) penalty assessed at 0.5% per month or partial month up to a 25% maximum.
  • If both the FTF and FTP penalties are assessed, the FTF penalty is reduced by the FTP penalty.

Underpayment penalties. You can also owe penalties for underpaying your taxes. These can be assessed at different levels, from a small fine to criminal charges, depending on whether or not the IRS determines there was criminal intent involved. Some of the possible charges include criminal or civil fraud, negligence, or frivolous return. Penalties for these can range from stiff fines to jail time.

Here is more about what happens if you don’t file your federal tax return.

What if You Can’t Pay Your Taxes?

Even if you can’t pay your taxes, you still need to file your taxes or at least file for an extension. This lets the IRS know that you are aware of the situation and you are trying to resolve it.

After you file your taxes or file for an extension, you need to communicate with the IRS and try to negotiate a payment plan so you can pay the IRS your taxes. You can ask for an extension (a set time frame to pay your tax bill), or enter into a payment plan.

Penalties and fees will continue to be assessed, so you will need to pay your taxes as soon as possible – even if that means dipping into your savings or taking out a loan to do so.

You should avoid payday loans, but you might consider a loan from a peer to peer lending company such as Lending Club. They can have the money to you in a matter of days if you qualify for a loan. Another option is using a credit card to pay your taxes.

This isn’t recommended for everyone because there are usually fees and interest rates involved. But it can be better than the alternative, which includes penalties and fees.

If you don’t pay your tax bill, the IRS can file a Notice of Federal Tax Lien, which can damage your credit score and cause other problems.

Failure to file or pay taxes can result in fines, ruined credit, or even jail time

There are stiff penalties for those who fail to pay their taxes, up to an including jail time for the worst offenders. All it takes to avoid these problems is a little bit of time to complete your taxes and file them or at least file for an extension. So get to it!

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About Ryan Guina

Ryan Guina is the founder and editor of Cash Money Life. He is a writer, small business owner, and entrepreneur. He served over 6 years on active duty in the USAF and is a current member of the IL Air National Guard.

Ryan started Cash Money Life in 2007 after separating from active duty military service and has been writing about financial, small business, and military benefits topics since then. He also writes about military money topics and military and veterans benefits at The Military Wallet.

Ryan uses Personal Capital to track and manage his finances. Personal Capital is a free software program that allows him to track his net worth, balance his investment portfolio, track his income and expenses, and much more. You can open a free account here.

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  1. Miss M says

    I got mine in on time (last minute) but know someone who didn’t. Hopefully it will be OK for them. Mr M filed an extension this year, he is due a refund and simply didn’t get his return started on time. I’ll have to push him to get them done or he’s likely to procrastinate until Oct.

  2. Didi says

    I e-filed through Turbo Tax (or at least I thought I did). I’ve been using it for 5 years and usually within 24 hours you get emails saying that the Federal/State return was accepted. I didn’t get one. I logged back into Turbo Tax and it says that I didn’t e-file yet. I went through all the steps again. I remember doing them so I completed the process so I don’t know what happened. We are getting a refund but how will this late filing effect the amount we get back. I assume there is some kind of penalty for not filing on time.

    • Ryan says

      Didi: I can’t say exactly how it will affect your return. Since you are receiving a refund, it probably won’t affect it much. For more information, I would contact the IRS or TurboTax. Best of luck.

  3. Raj says

    File for a tax extension ASAP. Make the tax payment as soon as possible, though, since the federal government charges interest on unpaid tax amounts.

  4. casper says

    Scary post! As I am not a US resident I am curious of something, do all US residents have to physically file your taxes? (physically meaning paper, online and so on..). Just wondering since we, in Denmark, doesn’t have to anything. You recieve your “tax-report” for the year and that’s it, unless you need to change some of the information. So can anyone tell me if it is so or not in the US?

    • Ryan says

      Casper: The majority of people in the US have to file taxes every year. It is based on how much money they earned (those who earned under a certain amount aren’t required to file taxes).

      • Mike C says

        (those who earned under a certain amount aren’t required to file taxes).
        and those people are called zero liability voters and they will never vote themselves a tax increase.

  5. Ryan says

    Income is supposed to be reported as it is earned in the US, but it isn’t always done well, especially when people are paid in cash. The US also has a lot of special rules and deductions people can qualify for, which can lower their tax bill. Unfortunately, the system is much too complicated.

  6. alcino says

    What happens if you dont have any income and even if you do its under the tax free threshold, do we still need to file a tax return?

  7. David says

    So I was actually going to file, had it all ready to hit the submit. I was going to receive over 1k in federal and state. But then I put it off, and when I went to file again, I couldn’t find the paperwork. I didn’t file for an extension either.
    If I do this years tax work next year, then I will be okay or what? Will I lose all of it? I have never had a year where I had to pay, this is 15 years that I have been always overpaying.

    • Janice says

      Go ahead and file both years this season. If you were due refunds there are no penalties and they don’t really care if you never file since you’re leaving money on their table. If you owe, however, totally different story.

  8. Just wondering says

    What happens if you havent paid taxes in a few years and you filed for the October 15 extension and you missed it and havent done anything since.

    • fredct says

      Ryan’s response is right (because he copied it from me 😉 ).

      I’ll add one more piece of advice on your case… if the reason you haven’t done taxes in a few years is simply lack-of-interest or procrastination or confusion, you’d probably do yourself a huge favor to find a local professional to do them for you. It’s much much better to pay someone a little rather than to get into deep trouble.

      If its a bigger issue about hiding something, then you need to just step up and face the music before it gets worse.

  9. krinkle says

    My ex-husband has not filed for the last 2 years (2007 and 2008) I doubt he will be filing this year on time. I filed in 2007 Married Separate since we were getting a divorce. The divorce was final in September, 2008. Can the IRS come back to me for the year 2007?

    • fredct says

      krinkle, you said you filed 2007 Married Filing Separately. If you did so accurately, I don’t see what the IRS could have an issue with.

  10. Johny M says

    I filed an extension last year, but never got to filing my taxes (family issues). I was due in returns about 5K. Can I still get that money back (or some of it) in this years return? Also, will I be slapped with failure to file or other charges?

    • Ryan says

      Johny, you may be hit with a fine or penalty for failure to file your return last year, but otherwise you should still be able to claim your refund. This is something that is best handled ASAP and I would visit with a tax professional or your local taxpayer advocate for assistance with this.

      You can find your local taxpayer advocate at the IRS website:

    • fredct says

      To provide a bit more detail… no, you cannot get that money back on this year’s return. Rather, to get it, you still need to file a 2008 return for last year. This year’s return reflects your results for 2009, and the money you were due in 2008 can only be claimed by filing a 2008 returns.

      My understanding (but I am not a tax professional!) is that late filing penalties are only a percentage of what you owe. Since they owe you, I don’t think there are any penalties… but again, I’m not a professional!

      Seriously though, if they owe you $5K, why the heck haven’t you filed? Get it over with and collect your money, man. Don’t wait too long – because after some period of time (I believe 3 years, but I’m not sure) – you forfeit the money and it can never be claimed.

      • fredct says

        Let me just reinforce one more thing…

        First, Ryan is exactly right. If you’re not comfortable doing it yourself (which apparently you aren’t), go ahead and call the IRS, your local taxpayer advocate, or contact a local tax professional. Whatever you do, do something… not nothing.

  11. Johny M says

    Thanks for the advice. Do you think H&R block folks can handle the issue or should I find a CPA. The 5 K was based on a preliminary calculation done with Trubotax. You are right, even though 2009 was a bad year there is no excuse I can make for not filing. Which reminds me of a quote I learned this year.

    “I have never seen a wild thing feel sorry for itself. A little bird will fall dead, frozen from a bough, without ever having felt sorry for itself.” -D.H. Lawrence.

    • Ryan says

      H&R Block and most other tax preparation services should be able to handle it. Just be sure to have your paperwork in order when you show up – that will keep prep time to a minimum and make it easier on everyone involved.

  12. Joe says

    I owe this year for the first time ever, if I skip filing and do my taxes next year (which I will get money back next year) whats the worst that can happen in one year? I ve talked to a few people and they have gone farther than one year before and broke even the next year. Please advise, I really dont want to mess with the IRS but it has been a diffcult year. BTW I owe the irs maybe 1000$ this year.

    Thanks for any advice

    • Ryan says

      Joe, it’s not a good idea not to file taxes – especially if you owe the IRS money. You will open yourself to penalties and fees, and there is potential jail time under certain circumstances.

      I recommend contacting the IRS or your local taxpayer advocate to discuss your options: http://www.irs.gov/advocate/article/0,,id=97402,00.html

      You may be able to get on a payment plan or some other arrangement that will lessen any potential penalties or fees you might have to pay for not filing.

      Best of luck.

    • fredct says

      Joe, Ryan is exactly right. Even if you can’t pay, file. The IRS is understanding – especially these days – of people who can’t pay it all immediately. They will work with you to set up a realistic payment plan that you can make. If you try to hide out, that’s when you get in trouble. If you go to them and set up a way that you will pay, you will find they will certainly work with you.

      If you’re more comfortable, you can contact your local IRS ‘taxpayer advocate’, who’s job it is to be on your side and help you work it out.

  13. Mike says

    As full-time students, including during the summer, my wife and & I didn’t make anything (zero income, aside from refunds on student loans, which our CPA has never claimed) in 2008 and so didn’t file. Reading all this, I’m not sure if that was the correct decision. Since we never filed a request for an extension, is there a way to go back and file a return for 2008?

    • Ryan says

      You can file a return for 2008 – just get the form from the IRS or your CPA and you can fill it out, sign it, and file. If you don’t owe any money it shouldn’t be a big deal, but if you owe money, then you can expect some penalties or fees.

      It’s best to get this done sooner rather than later, and it’s always good to have a return on record; no return may raise some red flags and invite a deeper look into your tax return history (potential for an audit down the road).

      • Mike says

        Ryan, Fredct, thanks both. We didn’t have income and I don’t think we’d be eligible for any credits. I just got worried after that guy flew his plane into the IRS building and I read an article saying that one of his early “issues” with the IRS had to do with an unfiled tax return during a year which he claimed he made no income. The IRS claimed otherwise, and he was fined.

        Do you guys or anyone else know if it’s possible to use the latest version of Turbo Tax or other software to prepare a 2008 return? If so, it’ll be no trouble to just do that, vs. the minimum $50 fee from my CPA. I’ve been thinking of switching to doing that anyway, since the CPA is quite expensive, despite being nice enough to charge on a sliding scale.

  14. fredct says

    Mike, to answer your question about TurboTax… I don’t believe so. I think each version just does one year, but you could ask Intuit. Are you thinking of filing a blank (or nearly blank) return just to cover yourself? If so, I’d probably do it by hand, rather than paying for software. It’ll just take a little time and a couple bucks to mail it certified.

    By the way, one more disclaimer… the link I sent before is the federal filing thresholds. If your state has an income tax, they may have different rules (although *usually* they try to map to the federal rules).

    Lastly, on the comment on the crazy guy who flew his plane into a building, he was an anti-government nut, so I’d take my chances on the IRS being correct. Perhaps he was trying to use the old ‘the income tax is unconstitutional’ b.s., or was trying to hide income (or claim it ‘didnt count’ or something) and they caught him. Anyone who would kill innocent people… well, lets just say I’m not going to trust a terrorist on tax advice.

    • Mike says

      Thanks, Fred. I’ll probably do it by hand then. I am looking to “cover myself” since I’ve had instances where I needed to show tax returns, even if it was for minimal income, while I was a student (applying for in-state tuition, immigration benefits, etc). I’d also like to join the military some day(wife has been reticent about it, or else I would have already applied) and I’ve heard the background information–especially for an officer package–is extremely in-depth. I’d prefer to have fewer things to explain just in case I’m able to go that route.

      As far as the tax nut, I read that on some major news site, so I would hope it was corroborated by someone else close to him at least. I keep up-to-date using Google News, and most of the links I click on are either NYT, WSJ, or WaPo, with the occasional CNN. IIRC, he had tried to cheat them before, but apparently sometime later had a year when he made no income. Although I imagine his previous tax evasion history had something to do with it, the fact that he was fined ($10k, I think) still worried me enough to look into it. If nothing else, it was a good impetus for me covering my own rear, just in case.

  15. zach says

    i have joined the military and i dont have time too file taxes and i dont know what i am doing what should i do

  16. Rono says

    Due to a stupid typo, my electronic filing was rejected and i missed the 4-15 deadline by one day.
    what happens next?
    will i get fined for being a day late?
    how much?

    • Ryan says

      Rono, today is still the 15th, you should be able to do an electronic filing. If not, then fill out the paper form and drop it off at the post office. Most post offices remain open well after normal hours to ensure tax returns are postmarked on the deadline.

      As for any potential fines for being a day late, I think each case is different. So hurry up and submit your paperwork! 🙂

  17. rachael says

    i did my husbands taxes for when we were not married and had to mail the papers for him to sign and he cant get them in till the 16th…what happens now?what do i need to do

    • Ryan says

      Rachel, if you are military you may be eligible for certain tax extensions, depending on your situation. Here is more information: military member tax deadline extensions.

      If you end up missing the deadline, you may not have a big issue. It all depends on whether you owe money and several other factors. Bests of luck, and thanks for supporting our country!

  18. sandy says

    I thought I finished my taxes and hit the complete button. Apparently I didn’t. I realized this when I looked at my account and saw that the IRS did not deduct the money from my account. When I logged back on I noticed that I was only 99% complete! I filed but I didn’t finish the payment section. It was two days after the deadline when I finally noticed. I completed filing right away. Will I be penalized for this? This is the first year that both my husband and I owe money, it’s a little stressful and we do not want anything bad to happen.

  19. fredct says

    For both Rachel and Sandy, I wouldn’t worry too much about it. The IRS has more important problems to deal with than people who are 1 or 2 days late. My hunch is nothing will happen in either of your cases.

    Your worst case however, is a 5% late filing penalty for being ‘a month’ late. So if you were due a refund, there is no consequence. If you owed $100, technically you’d owe a $5 penalty.

    So your worst case is getting a letter from the IRS asking for $X… that’s all, nothing worse than that. No one’s going to come after you, or charge you with anything, or cart you off to jail. If the amount is a pretty small amount, I doubt they’ll even bother. If you owed $5K, and you now owe a $250 penalty, well, you might get the letter.

    Here’s a column I just found which pretty much confirms that the IRS doesn’t care about a day or two, although it was written in 1996, before there was much efiling, so it basically looks at it from a ‘checking postmarks’ perspective:

  20. hannah says

    My husband I did a tax return for 2009 and I deposited my traditional IRA before the dead line.
    However, we probably made a kind of unaware mistake while we were trying to open an IRA accont on line.
    We mailed a check with a IRA form to the bank .
    They called and let us know there was no valid IRA account , but just regular savings account for my husband, threfore, they were unable to deposit the check for the 2009.
    They said the check can be deposited for 2010 after opening valid IRA acct otherwise, they will return the check to us.

    What are we supposed to do now?



    • Ryan says

      Hannah, it sounds like you missed the deadline to make a 2009 contribution. You can either use the money for a 2010 contribution, or you can use the funds for something else.

  21. fredct says

    Ryan is right. And if I may suggest, I would advise you just leave it as a 2010 contribution… better to save more than less, right?

    However, I think you may be digging at something else… did you mark down a 2009 contribution on your tax forms and take a deduction for it? If so, your only choice is to file an amended return (1040X), pay them the extra you’ll owe, and then take the deduction when next year rolls around instead.

    P.S. Oh, and lastly, I noticed you said ‘bank’. Your investments are certainly your call, but if you have a time horizon of 10 years or more, I’d suggest you consider an investment beyond that of a fixed return CD. If you’re comfortable with some short term risk, there are investments that are probably more appropriate for retirement savings.

  22. Paula Meyer says

    I filed my son’s taxes on 4/13/2010. Today is 05/15/10. I don’t usually use my email here at home but because I used my email at work for my taxes I used my home email for my son’s I just happened to open my email today and saw that my son’s taxes were rejected. He owed both the state and the federal government. We sent in a 100.00 payment for his federal and paid with an electronic check for the state. Both payments have cleared his bank. I have resubmitted his files, re transposed a number. Will he be ok. Please tell me he won’t be penalized. There is proof that he filed and he did send money. He hasn’t heard from either the state or the federal government.

    • fredct says

      The only penalty for lack of filing or late filing or late payment is a percentage of what’s due. If what he is owes is zero, there will be no penalty.

  23. Jay says

    Hey, I couldnt pay my tax last year what sh0uld I do I’m in the Military does anyone know if i will get in troble

    • Ryan says

      Jay, it depends if you owe money on your taxes or not. If you don’t owe money, then you don’t have anything to worry about. However, it might still be a good idea to file your taxes so you have a tax record from last year. Additionally, your military classification may have given you an extension on your tax filing deadline if you were deployed last year. Here is more information about Tax Deadline Extensions for Military Members.

      My recommendation is to meet with an accountant to get more specific information about your tax situation. It might cost a few bucks, but it’s better to know now than to find out later that you owe back taxes and penalties. Best of luck, and thanks for your service!

  24. Tim says

    Hi, I’m nervous for I’m filing my 2007, 2008 and 2009 tax returns now. I was going through a tremendous amount of personal stress that resulted in me lossing my house, separation from my spouse and severe depression. I filed extensions for each year however, never filed for 07 and 08. I may owe some…not sure.

    • Ryan says

      Tim, It may be a good idea to contact a professional tax planner for assistance with your situation if you believe you may owe taxes from those years. In almost every case it is better to be the one contacting the IRS about an issue with your taxes instead of having the IRS contact you. Best of luck!

  25. jackie says

    Hello i never filed my 2008, nd 2009 taxes do you know how much penalty i will be hit with i am doing it along with my 2010 taxes as well is their a site i can go to to do it electroniclly i never rec. a letter from them they did send me papers to go ahead and file along with my w-2’s.

    • fredct says

      According to a Google search (and the answer sounds familiar to me) the penalty for not filing is 5% (of what you owe) per month, up to a maximum of 25%. So if you owe $1000 for that year, you will penalized $250. Even if you can’t pay, it is much better to file and work out a payment plan.

      That does mean, if you didn’t owe anything for that year then there’s no penalty (why would there be? you let them hold your money for a while for free).

      Answer for your state will vary.

      As far as your next steps, here’s the IRS’s page on the matter:

      It is greatly to your advantage to be the one to contact the IRS. If they have to track you down, that’s when you can really get in trouble. So you’re doing the right thing.

  26. cassie says

    I haven’t filed my taxes for today’s deadline yet, but I don’t owe anything I will actually get a refund this when I do. Will I get penalized for not filling on time? My husband says I will.

    • fredct says

      Why don’t you file an extension (Form 4868). It’s free, easy, and automatic, and will give you 6 extra months. That way you won’t have to worry about it.

  27. dianne says

    I filed my report, electronically, via Turbo Tax. Today I learned they never received it. Will I be fined? I will call Turbo Tax in the morning to learn what the next step is. Fortunately I have all the papers that were sent, but don’t know the recourse? And (repeating myself) will the IRS penalize me?

  28. Logan says

    I already filed my 2010 tax returns but forgot to include 1 more tax return from one of my part time job, can I just include that for next year’s return instead? Am I gonna be penalized?

    • Ryan says

      Logan, the best course of action is to file an amended tax return this year. If you owe any penalties they will be lighter the sooner you file them. It’s always better to be proactive with the IRS and admit an error instead of waiting for them to find it or trying to ignore it.

  29. joe says

    Hey I had a question .I’m a 1st time tax payer,I live with my parents,and i only have one job and that is making money off of this gpt site on the internet
    An in 2008 i made $725.42 from that gpt site,and after i made that much money from that gpt site in 2008,then in 2009 that gpt site had wanted me to send them a w-9 form ,and so i did send them one in 2009,and then in 2009 they had sent me 1099 misc forms in the mail to file for 2008 taxes ,and instead of me filing the 1099 misc in 2009 for 2008 taxes , i had accidentally lost the 1099 misc forms,and now it’s in 2011 ,and i had wanted to know if it would still be possible if I could still file the 1099 misc for the 2008 taxes and pay off the taxes that I might owe,and if it is then i wonder if you would know how much I would owe in late charges for filing and paying off 2008 taxes really late ?

    please help me

  30. Ryan says

    My taxes were withheld and paid by my employer but I never filed for the past 2 years. Every year before, when I filed, I always got some money..

    What are my penalties if I’m owed a refund but have not filed?


    • Fred says

      There’s no penalty if you’re owed a refund. The government thanks you for allowing them to hold onto your money for free. And they’ll happily keep it permanently if you don’t file within 3 years of the original deadline.

  31. marc b says

    I filed my taxes this year for the 1st time in a couple years electronically and according to where’s my refund it says I’m supposed to have it deposited on feb 23 in my bank account. Am I def receiving that refund even though I haven’t filed in a few years?

    • Ryan says

      Marc, there is no way for us to know when you will receive your refund, as each return and refund are on a case by case basis. That said, there can be delays when there are extenuating circumstances for individual tax returns. If you have specific questions, I recommend contacting the IRS.

  32. jennie ramirez says

    i just have a question…i e filed my taxes and they were rejected…usually my taxes are taken cuz of child support arrears.. but this yr i was offered a settlement to erase my debt….so im trying to put it off as long as i can so i can pay who ever im borrowing that money from . so my question is since i have been rejected does that mean that i havent filed? or does it mean that i have ?

  33. Wes Lee Snipes says

    Awaiting a document via mail to complete my taxes. Going online via TurboTax, how much of a penalty should I expect if I’m 2 days late (again going via TurboTax online).

    • Ryan Guina says

      Erika, it is too late to contribute to an IRA, so you will most likely need to file an amended tax return to indicate that you did not actually contribute during the tax year for which you filed.

  34. Bruce says

    Hi, I filed an extension and paid all my taxes on-time by April 15th. Now in October, I missed the filing date by a couple days… are there penalties even though I paid 100% of my taxes owed back in April?

  35. PETER says

    I Filed my taxes for 2012. I have one issue though, my wife worked in early January of 2012 and I forgot to put that when I did my tax return. As of now, we are getting a tax return and do not owe any money. She didn’t make a big amount, only $900. How do I fix this? Thanks.

  36. Sue says

    We normally file an extension for pension purposes so we have additional time to save our contribution. If we file an extension but are then forced to file our return before 4/15 for fasfa reasons, does filing by the original due date make the extension invalid? Not sure if university will allow us to verify fasfa figures later than 4/15 . We could really use extra time to save pension funds.

  37. KC @ genxfinance says

    The fees are scary. So to avoid these, file as early as you can. You avoid panicking and all the fees. Plus, the peace of mind that you have file your tax return is just priceless.

  38. Britny says

    hey i owe 2 dollars to the state and forgot to pay i just now looked up where to send the check to all i need to know now is how do i find out how much to pay since i didnt do it before the deadline?

  39. shonda says

    Today is April 16th. I have been on a work trip and did not file my taxes by April 15th. I am going thru a situtation. I know i am going to owe taxes, and i will be divorced by the end of the month. I cannot afford to pay taxes. What do I do??????

    • Ryan Guina says

      Shonda, I recommend speaking with an accountant or other tax professional for advice. They can help you file for an extension and get your taxes in order, and if necessary, request a payment plan from the IRS. I recommend doing this ASAP so you can get this sorted out. Ignoring it will only make the problem worse and potentially cause you to have additional penalties and fess for paying your taxes late.

  40. Carol says

    We thought that we might owe for 2012 tax year. We filed and extension and we estimated around 1600. When we got all our deductions together and finished we actually are getting a refund. Here is the problem, we passed the deadline to electronically file AND we just electronically filed our 2013 taxes. We get a refund on 2013 as well. We mailed our 2012 the same day as we electronically filed. Will they see that we thought we owed and deduct from our 2013 because they think we owe or will they wait until they actually receive our 2012?

    • Ryan Guina says

      You have a unique situation, Carol, and one that I can’t answer. The IRS handles each situation on a case by case basis. In your situation, they will likely process your 2013 return first, because you filed it electronically (it’s faster and easier for them to process electronically filed returns). If your 2013 return informed the IRS that you may owe on 2012, when your 2012 return hadn’t yet been filed, then that may affect your 2013 return. My recommendation is to contact the IRS and ask what would happen in your situation. You may also need to contact a tax professional if this ends up affecting your 2012 and 2013 returns. Best of luck!

  41. Nyla says

    My corporate return was filed on March 7th and accepted. My tax preparer mistakenly sent the extension to the IRS last week. Will this effect anything or generate a notice from the IRS?

  42. Heather says

    I worked with H&R online. The online part was easy. I thought it would be easy anyway. But it turned out that once reviewed by an accountant, they forgot to file on one of the states I wanted them too. They didn’t do it on time, and I was locked out of the system, so I couldn’t fix it. The state file wasn’t added so I couldn’t confirm the request to move forward.

    I was stuck and it PASSED THE OCT. 15th deadline. I’m very angry about it. They are supposedly finishing them now, but is there anything I can do besides turn them in to not get a penalty? I do not feel it was my fault in anyway and have all the emails and documentation to prove it. Should I send it to the IRS along with the filing? Should I talk to them? I’m freaking out about being late.

    • Ryan Guina says

      You should contact H&R Block and ask them how to proceed. You can also call the IRS and explain the situation. You may or may not even owe penalties or fees, depending on your situation. For example, if the IRS owes you a refund, there is no problem for filing late. This is a difficult situation, and you will likely need to work with the IRS, your state tax agency, and H&R Block to resolve this. Best of luck!

  43. Lisa says

    I E-filed my 2014 taxes late this year, in August. I am expecting a refund and have no reason to believe I would owe the IRS for anything. However, I’ve yet to receive my refund and here we are about to enter December and all the info I can get is “its being processed”. So what exactly does that mean? Can anyone help me, will I have to wait until next tax session for my refund to be sent out to me?

  44. Brenda says

    My husband and I filed late due to family health issues: caring for an elderly paren who was in an accident in late March. I knew wr were due a refund but wasn’t aware we needed to file am extension. We e-filed in July when life settled down for us and got a letter in early October asking for additional information to be submitted. We complied and submitted soon after but have had no further communication from the Secretary of State’s office. Do we need to obtain an attorney to check the status of our refund? Please advise.. Thank you.

  45. Alycia says

    So I missed both deadlines. Simply forgot about it. I am owed money though. At this point, I’m not concerned about getting my refund, I’m just worried about the consequences. Will anything happen? How will it affect next years filing?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Alycia, Just file your return as quickly as you can get the paperwork completed. This will get your refund sent to you more quickly, and ensure there are no problems going forward. As for next year’s return, you will want to have this year’s return filed before you file next year because the tax return has a line item corresponding to the previous year’s return.

  46. Tissam says

    My husban did not pay his taxes last two years 2012 and 2013 we are worry about penatly…we don t know how much we have to them or how much that cost for 2years

    • Ryan Guina says

      Tissam, the best thing you can do is sit down and fill out the tax return paperwork (or software return) for each of the years your husband didn’t file taxes. This will let you know where you stand – whether you owe the IRS money, or if you are due a refund. If you owe money, then it’s possible you may also owe penalties and interest for failure to pay. But if you are owed a refund, then there is no penalty and the IRS will send you the money they owe you. The only way you can know for certain is to fill out the return. And I know it’s scary, but the best thing you can do is contact the IRS if you owe them money. That will let them know you are admitting to a mistake and they can help you set up a payment plan if you cannot afford to pay the taxes in a lump sum. Best of luck!

  47. chantel says

    My step dad has claimed me and my son on his taxes but the irs is giving him a hard time with giving him a refund the deadline has passed for me to file for myself and just claim me and my son instead of my step dad claiming us is there anyway that I can still file my taxes and claim me and my son if my step dad doesn’t get a refund for claiming us

  48. Mike D says

    Quick question, hoping somebody can help or point me in the right direction. I started a job in November of last year, but due to delayed paperwork, I wasn’t able to turn in my time cards and receive payment until April 21st.

    Am I still at risk of penalty for filing late? Do I need to file for an extension? Should I just file right away and hope for the best?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Mike, you should always file an extension or your tax return as soon as possible, and pay anything you owe, if applicable. Once you file your extension and pay anything you may owe, then you are generally in the clear (assuming you filed for your extension and made the payment before the filing deadline). Since you are filing after the deadline, then you want to get the paperwork done ASAP, the same for paying anything you might owe. The longer you wait, the more likely you will owe penalties or fees, and the more likely those penalties or fees will increase.

  49. Gwen says

    When I was married to my ex he had a business that went under. At tax time his computer with all his sales and tax info crashed. This I believe was in 2007. He still has done nothing to retrieve the data. He asked for an extension that year. I files my taxes. I cannot remember if I filed jointly or married but separately ? Am I liable for any accrued fees after all these years and what do I do ?!

  50. Adolfo says

    Didnt file my taxes of filed an extension for 2014 it is. July 9 2015 what do i do? Im scared to find out

  51. dany says

    Hi i just realised i forgot to file my taxes this year and i am non resident alien, what are my options right now? is this going to affect my status such as if i apply for a H1 Visa and Green Card, i dont know if i owe irs either, i put exempt with my work so i was getting everything back basically, i am so scared and stressed right now

    • Ryan Guina says

      Dany, you have a unique situation that requires specialized advice. You need to speak with an accountant or tax professional for further guidance.

  52. Robert says

    In 2013 I filed an extension and send in a check for exactly what I owed April 1, 2014.
    I have post office receipt proof of that.
    4 weeks later, I received a lost W2, made sure every thing was correct.
    Mailed my IRS form on or about May 1, 2014.
    Now it is 2016. I received a IRS Letter showing they credited my account with my payment.
    They claim I never filed for 2013. My wife and I filed jointly. We went to the post office and just mailed it. We didn’t keep a receipt or pay for registered. (DARN!!)
    It is heartbreaking because I trusted the system. Will I be fined for failure to file?

  53. Kevin says

    If I am late and I have to pay and I will have a fine, should I pay extra for the fine or just what I owe and let them figure out the fine and pay it then?

    • Ryan Guina says

      Kevin, at the minimum you should pay what you owe. If there is a way to determine the penalties or fines, then I would go ahead and pay them at that time, so long as you know the amounts and you have the funds. This would avoid any further interest or penalties. If you don’t know how to determine the possible fines, then try to use some tax software or contact a tax professional. They may be able to help you. And I wouldn’t worry about overpaying on any potential penalties or fines because the IRS will either issue a refund or give you the opportunity to apply it to next year’s tax bill.

  54. LK says

    I filed my 1065 LLC (partnership) tax by the usual April 15th 2017, but IRS sent me a penalty-bill for $390.00 for not filing in time. It turns out that they changed the partnership tax filing deadline to March 15th starting this year. I was not informed about this by IRS, which makes the steep penalty amount not fair.
    Ryan, is there a way to share the blame for this initial-confusion with IRS?
    I plan to call them and ask for waiving the penalty this 1 time.

    Regards, LK –

    • Ryan says

      LK, I have been filing my business tax returns by March 15 for the last 5 or 6 years. That was the date my accountant told me they were due. I don’t have a partnership, so those rules may be different. In either case, you can request a tax penalty abatement. You can look up instructions online, but basically, you just call or write the IRS and ask them to excuse this mistake. It’s very possible, though not guaranteed that they will. I have successfully petitioned the IRS for a penalty abatement for a similar late tax return and subsequent penalties. I wish you the best!

        • LK says

          Ryan, great news!

          I called IRS today and explained that it was an honest mistake to miss the new March 15th deadline, because it was always April 15th for my partnership tax filing in the past, and they checked something and said I quality for 1-time waiving of this penalty for missing the deadline. This is great & I’m very happy! 🙂

          Thanks for your very helpful pointers, giving me high confidence and comfort level waiting & talking to IRS, without stressing too much.

          Have a great week, Ryan.
          Thank you again!

          Best Regards, LK –

  55. Mel says

    I filed 1099 forms today and knew that they were late (had to be turned in by Jan. 31), but I had no idea that there was such a high penalty for turning them in late. Through google I discovered that the late penalty is $50.00 per 1099 form turned in between 1 and 30 days late. I submitted 25 forms, so that’s $1250!

    I was late because I was trying to get Tax ID numbers for everyone that I needed to file for. I got all the Tax id numbers I needed and filed this morning.

    I have 2 questions about this:
    1. How long does it take to receive the late fee letter from the IRS from the date of E-filing the forms?
    2. Does the IRS always charge their stated late fees, or is there a possibility that will either overlook the late fee or forget to charge me the fee?

    Thanks for any help you can provide!

  56. RC says

    I was making an attempt to file an extension using TurboTax at the last minute. 11:55PM. I clicked on extension, entered the estimated amount owed (lots) and then TT told me I had filed my extension and that I did not owe any money.!!? I was sure this was incorrect as I knew that I had to pay the estimate, but TT did not take me anywhere to make payment and as I am trying to figure it out, the witching hour passed. No monies paid, and I did not see how I could have made the extension because as I go back through it tells me that because I have not filed, I can cancel the extension…? Makes no sense to me. Will TT help. Will IRS accept the explanation and reduce fees/fines?

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