Extension a possible lifeline for taxpayers

STAFF AND WIRE REPORTS

If you’re among the 10 million taxpayers who won’t meet the Thursday tax-filing deadline, now is the time to ask the Internal Revenue Service for an automatic four-month extension.
Portales CPA Terry Cone knows about those extensions. He is recommending people who have complicated returns to file, but haven’t met with a CPA, to go ahead and submit an extension to the IRS by Thursday.
Taxpayers can extend their filing deadline to Aug. 15 by submitting IRS Form 4868. The simple form can be mailed, transmitted electronically or used as a worksheet to file by telephone. The toll-free number for extensions — 1-888-796-1074 — is available 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. local time.
However, those hoping to get their returns filed before the midnight deadline on Thursday have a variety of options.
One option is filing electronically, which expedites the process of receiving return money from the IRS, Cone said.
Mailing returns can take up to six weeks to receive funds from the government, while electronic returns can be filed, processed and completed in a week.
Cone said the IRS only processes returns every Thursday at noon, so those who file on Thursday after that time will experience a delay of one week.
The IRS charges interest on taxes not paid by April 15. Additional penalties may apply if the taxpayer paid less than 90 percent of taxes owed by the deadline.