10 Things You Should Know About the 2020 Tax Extension

The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic has had an unforeseeable impact on the finances of most American taxpayers. In response, the IRS has extended this year’s filing deadline from April 15, 2020 to July 15, 2020.

Working Americans are still adjusting to the “new normal” of social distancing. Some employers have enabled tools allowing for remote or home-based networking. Yet unfortunately, numerous professionals working in non-essential businesses have either been suspended or put on temporary hiatus. Most alarming are the record-breaking numbers of new unemployment claims filed this year!

In this financially turbulent environment, taxpayers have a number of questions about how (or if) this new deadline will affect their tax filings. So in order to clarify, we’ve created this brief list summarizing 10 things you should know about the 2020 tax extension:

  1. No additional forms or confirmations are required to automatically qualify for this extension. This applies to all taxpayers.
  2. Taxes owed by April 15, 2020 can be deferred to the new deadline without penalties and interest, regardless of the amount.
  3. Taxpayers needing additional time to file can still fill out IRS Form 4868 for a further extension to October 15, 2020.
  4. Estimated tax payments for the first quarter of 2020 are included in this deferral. Second quarter 2020 estimated tax payments are due June 15, 2020.
  5. Taxpayers saving for retirement can also extend their 2019 IRA contributions to the new July 15, 2020 deadline.
  6. The July 15, 2020 deadline is a federal tax extension. State filings and payment deadlines vary depending on the state.
  7. Taxpayers who overpaid on their 2019 taxes should still file by April 15, 2020 to avoid a delay in receiving their refunds.
  8. All IRS Taxpayer Assistance Centers are temporarily closed, and in-person service has been discontinued until further notice.
  9. Due to overwhelming need, taxpayers may experience difficulty or delays when using IRS telephone and online services.
  10. Taxpayers unable to reach the IRS are encouraged to contact a Certified Tax Professional.

As we adjust to these rapidly-evolving changes within our offices, our communities, and our homes, it’s important to remember that we are all sharing this experience together. We separate socially to protect the most vulnerable amongst us.

For this reason, the professionals at Forward Tax have moved aggressively in transitioning our staff to accommodate these changes. We are equipped with the technology and networking to continue serving our clients’ needs, and we remain ready to answer any questions you have during this period of financial uncertainty.