Tax Guide

IRS Postpones Tax Filing and Payment Deadline to May 17

IRS Postpones Tax Filing and Payment  Deadline to May 17
Ines Zemelman, EA
18 March 2021

The Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service will extend the tax filing deadline for individuals from April 15, 2021, to May 17, 2021, as a result of the pandemic, the agencies announced this Wednesday.

"This continues to be a tough time for many people, and the IRS wants to continue to do everything possible to help taxpayers navigate the unusual circumstances related to the pandemic, while also working on important tax administration responsibilities," said Chuck Rettig, the IRS Commissioner.

May 17, 2021 is the new tax deadline for tax year 2020

Along with the postponement of the federal income tax filing due date individual taxpayers including those who pay self-employment tax can also postpone federal income tax payments for the 2020 tax year due on April 15, 2021, to May 17, 2021. No penalties or interest will be applied. 

Filing deadline & Tax payment deadline moved to May 17, 2021 without penalties and interest, regardless of the amount owed. 

State tax deadlines can be different. To find out the details read the article on state tax deadlines for 2021.

No action needed — extension automatic for all

This is an automatic federal tax filing and payment relief, so there’s no need to file any forms to get the extension from the IRS. If an individual taxpayer needs extra time beyond May 17 to file the return they should file Form 4868 and request an extension until October 15, 2021. 

To request an extension until October 15, please request an extension in your portal. For more information on extensions and how to request them, please see this article. Please note that extensions provide extra time to file, but they do not extend the time to pay.  If you owe tax, interest will accrue from May 17, 2021.

This postponement doesn’t apply to state tax payments, deposits or payments of any other type of federal tax.

The IRS extended tax deadlines for victims of the February winter storms from Oklahoma, Louisiana, and Texas from April 15 to June 15.

There are obvious perks of filing early: the sooner you file your tax return the sooner you’ll receive your stimulus payment

Expats have automatic extension until June 15, 2021

If you live outside the United States, you have an automatic extension to file until June 15, 2021. Note, TFX recommends requesting an extension for all taxpayers regardless - there is no downside.

Ines Zemelman, EA
founder of Taxes for Expats