The federal income tax filing due date for individuals for the 2020 tax year will be automatically extended from April 15, 2021, to May 17, 2021. The IRS will provide formal guidance on this matter in the next few days.
Individual taxpayers can also postpone their federal income tax payments for the 2020 tax year, previously due on April 15, 2021, now to May 17, 2021, without penalties and interest, regardless of the amount owed. This postponement applies to individual taxpayers, including individuals who pay self-employment tax. Penalties, interest, and additions to tax will begin to accrue on any remaining unpaid balances as of May 17, 2021. Individual taxpayers will automatically avoid interest and penalties on the taxes paid by May 17.
Individual taxpayers do not need to file any forms or call the IRS to qualify for this automatic federal tax filing and payment relief. Individual taxpayers who need additional time to file beyond the May 17 deadline can request a filing extension until Oct. 15 by filing Form 4868.
This federal tax filing deadline postponement only applies to individual federal income returns and tax (including tax on self-employment income), but not on state tax payments or deposits or payments of any other type of federal tax.
The filing extension may provide the taxpayers additional time to meet their tax obligations in what is becoming one of the most complicated tax seasons in decades. The change comes after calls from accountants and lawmakers to put off the due date as new legislation and pandemic-related work changes disrupt taxpayer plans.