Well hasn’t time caught up on us this year, we’re now in the final week before the US tax deadline of 15th October, and time to get everything filed.
For those who filed extensions prior to 15th July, we’re now at the extended due date deadline, which falls on 15th October. This of course actually falls on Friday 16th October for taxpayers living in New Zealand or Australia, due to the time difference with the USA.
If you have a completed tax return which has not yet been filed, it is important to file this week to avoid late filing penalties from the IRS.
For tax returns which can be electronically filed, these must be filed by 2pm NZT, or 12pm AEST to still be considered on time in the US.
For tax returns which need to be posted to the IRS, these must be posted on Thursday 15th October, in order to have an “on-time” postmarked date. There’s no need to worry about how long it takes to arrive at the IRS’ door, as the IRS use the postmarked date as the filing date, rather than when it is actually received.
Whilst tax returns which are filed late are at risk of penalties, these don’t apply in all situations. Late filing penalties are only applied if tax is owing on your return. Otherwise for a tax return with no liability, there are no automatic penalties for filing late. Of course, even if you have no tax liability (and thus no late filing penalty), we would recommend doing all possible to file on time.