Federal taxes are generally due in the spring, and extensions are due in the fall. But the specific dates depend on the type of tax return you file. Filers typically have until April 15th to submit their tax returns. But since the 15th falls on a Saturday and Emancipation Day falls on Monday, April 17th, the deadline is pushed to April 18th.
Tax deadlines due for 2022 returns
Here’s a quick rundown of when you can expect to pay federal taxes this year.
|Type of tax return||Filing deadline||Extension deadline|
|Individual income tax returns||April 18, 2023||October 16, 2023|
|Partnership returns||March 15, 2023||September 15, 2023|
|S-corporation tax returns||March 15, 2023||September 15, 2023|
If you can’t meet the filing deadline to submit your personal tax return, you can apply for an extension by April 18th instead. Keep in mind that an extension to file doesn’t postpone the due date for taxes you owe. And if you’re granted an extension until October 16th, any federal taxes you owe are still due on April 18th.
When are state taxes due?
While most states follow the federal deadline for state income tax returns, some give you more time to file. And although nine states don’t impose a state income tax, some tax investment income over a specific amount. Be sure to consult a tax professional to confirm whether you owe additional taxes.
|State||State income tax deadline|
|New Hampshire||Not applicable|
|New Jersey||April 18|
|New Mexico||April 18|
|New York||April 18|
|North Carolina||April 18|
|North Dakota||April 18|
|Rhode Island||April 18|
|South Carolina||April 18|
|South Dakota||Not applicable|
|Washington DC||April 18|
|West Virginia||April 18|
When are quarterly estimated taxes due?
If you’re self-employed or work as an independent contractor, you’ll need to make quarterly estimated payments. This is because payroll taxes aren’t withheld from your paycheck as they are in a W-2 job.
If you’re expected to owe at least $1,000 in federal taxes and fail to make quarterly estimated payments, you’ll incur penalties and interest charges. Here’s a breakdown of when those payments are due:
|If you earned income during these months…||…taxes are due on|
|January, February, March||April 18, 2023|
|April, May, June||June 15, 2023|
|July, August, September||September 15, 2023|
|October, November, December||January 16, 2024|
How to file a tax extension
If you need more time to file your taxes, you can apply for a tax extension by filling out Form 4868 and submit it by the IRS’s extended deadline of April 18, 2023, for free. You can file your tax extension electronically by using Free File on the IRS website, which submits Form 4868 directly to the IRS database, or going through a tax professional or online tax software to e-file your extension.
If you prefer to go the snail mail route, print and fill out your tax extension form, and drop it in the mail. Make sure you have proof that you mailed it. This way the IRS can’t come back and claim they never received it.
Page four of Form 4868 lists several addresses to mail out your extension. The exact address depends on the state you live in and whether you’re including a payment with your form.
Keep in mind that a tax extension doesn’t give you extra time to pay your taxes; it only buys you extra time to file. If you owe money to the IRS, those taxes are still due on April 18th if you want to avoid penalty fees and interest.
What happens if I miss my tax deadline?
The type of penalty you’ll pay depends on your circumstances. The chart below breaks down two common penalty types and how much you could owe:
|Penalty type||What it means||Penalty amount|
|Failure to file||You didn’t file your tax return by the original or extended due date||If filed within 60 days of deadline:|
If filed after 60 days of deadline:
|Failure to pay||You didn’t pay your taxes in full by the original due date||0.5% each month the tax goes unpaid, up to 25% of the total owed|
The key to reducing your penalties and interest is to file and pay your federal taxes as soon as possible. If you wait to pay and file past the deadline, you could pay a penalty equal to 47.5% of the tax due — a 22.5% late filing and a 25% late payment penalty.
Who’s required to file a tax return?
If you’re at least 18 years old and can’t be claimed as a dependent on someone else’s tax return, then you can file a return each year. But whether you’re required to file taxes depends on your age, income type and filing status.
You don’t have to file taxes if your gross income is less than your standard deduction, but this only applies if you have regular income. If you’re self-employed, you have to file a return no matter what.
Even if you’re not required to file a return, you may want to do it anyway to take advantage of specific tax credits.
How much do I have to make to file taxes?
The minimum income for filing taxes depends on your age and filing status. Here’s a breakdown of who must file their 2022 tax returns in 2023:
|Filing status||Minimum income|
|Married filing jointly|
|Head of household|
|Married filing separately|
Specific people, like self-employed individuals, may still be required to file even if they make less than the minimum income threshold. And depending on your circumstances, while you may not have to file a tax return, there may be reasons that you would want to file a return, such as to qualify for a tax credit or to get a refund on withheld income taxes.
How to file your taxes
Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to get started on your taxes this season.
Step 1: Choose your method of filing options.
Depending on your specific tax situation, you’ll generally have three options when it comes to filing your taxes: print off your tax form and fill it out yourself, use a tax preparation software, or hire a tax preparer. Here are some things to consider when comparing your options:
|DIY||Tax prep software||Tax preparer|
|Best for accuracy|
|Best for simple returns|
|Best for complicated returns|
|Best for guaranteed highest refund|
Step 2: Gather your paperwork.
The first step in filing your taxes is to gather any information that proves you had income and deductible expenses for the year. Some common tax documents to gather include:
- Social Security numbers for everyone listed on your tax return
- W-2s or 1099 forms
- Earned interest from bank accounts
- Medical bills and receipts
- Dependent care expenses
- Mortgage interest
- Property taxes
- Sales and local income taxes
- Educational expenses
- Small business-related expenses
- Charitable donations
- Retirement contributions
Step 3: Choose an online provider to file with.
Most brand-name tax return software offer a free e-file version for simple taxes using Form 1040. If you own multiple assets, are claiming deductions or credits or are filing business taxes, you’ll want to make sure that the software you choose can handle your needs.
The US government offers a free option to file your federal tax return online through Free File. But you won’t receive guidance or instruction, so ensure you’re comfortable with your tax knowledge before choosing this tax filing option.
Step 4: Sign up and begin your returns.
H&R Block, TurboTax and similar tax services take the guesswork out of filing your taxes. They walk you through how to fill out the various form fields and calculate whether you should take a standard or itemized deduction, so you can make sure you’re receiving your maximum refund. Prompts also cover life events and how they’re incorporated into your return, such as buying a house or car.
Step 5: Double-check everything.
Most services scan your return to alert you of discrepancies or red flags that you might need to address before submitting your taxes. Review your tax return carefully and address any discrepancies the software flags to ensure everything is accurate. Once you’re ready, the tax software submits your forms to the IRS and forwards you tracking information on how to check in on your return.
Step 6: Choose your refund or payment method.
Three out of four people get a tax refund each year. If you’re one of them, select how you want to receive your refund. Direct deposit is typically the quickest route, but you may have other options depending on which software you choose.
If you owe money, you can pay your bill directly through the online tax software. Most accept direct payments from your bank, credit or debit cards, checks and money orders. The IRS also offers installment agreements if you can’t pay your tax bill by the deadline.
To get an idea of how big your tax bill may be, view your state and federal income tax brackets.
Step 7: File your taxes on time.
Submit your return and pay any taxes owed by April 18th to avoid penalty fees. If you file for an extension, remember this gives you until October 17 to file your tax return only. Tax payments are still due on April 18th.
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How do I find out how much I owe in taxes?
Taxpayers who file their returns before the tax deadline will know how much they owe as soon as they complete their form. Those who request an extension need to estimate their payments beforehand.
There are two main ways to estimate your tax payment. Use an online calculator from a tax software company’s website, such as TurboTax or H&R Block. Or, use last year’s return to estimate your payment if your tax situation hasn’t changed.
If you owe more than you were hoping, you might want to adjust your tax withholdings to prevent this same thing from happening next year.
Are there ways to reduce my penalties and interest?
The IRS offers several payment and relief options for those who can’t pay back all or part of their taxes.
If you’re behind on paying your federal taxes, the IRS offers two types of installment plans. Set up these plans either online, by phone, mail or in person.
|Payment plan||Eligibility||Payment term||Fees|
|Short-term payment||Individual filer and owe up to $100,000 in combined tax, penalties and interest.||Within 180 days|
|Long-term payment||Individual filer and owe $50,000 or less in combined tax, penalties and interest.||More than 180 days|
Here’s a breakdown of two relief options offered by the IRS, along with eligibility requirements.
- Reasonable cause. If you’ve experienced some type of hardship — such as a death in the family, natural disaster or medical trauma — fill out IRS Form 843 and apply for a penalty refund for taxes paid in the past one to three years. You’ll need to provide thorough documentation to support your claim. If the IRS denies your request, you can make an appeal.
- First-time penalty abatement. The IRS may waive penalties if you meet these three requirements: you filed your tax return on time, you’re current on your tax bill or have a payment plan in place and you haven’t had any penalties in the past three years.
Your tax deadline depends on your return type and whether you filed for an extension. If you owed taxes and missed your deadline, explore your payment and relief options. Then, make a plan to pay them off as soon as possible.
Frequently asked questions
When should I expect my tax refund?
If you file taxes online, expect to receive your refund within 21 days. If you file by mail, it could take as long as six weeks. Track the status of your refund using the Where’s My Refund tool on the IRS website.
What are the rules around filing an extension if I’m receiving a refund?
If you’re set to get a refund this year, you don’t have to file an extension and you won’t be penalized if you file after the deadline. The IRS will hold onto your refund for you. You have three years to file your tax return before you forfeit any refund you were set to get.
How does the IRS choose the tax deadline?
If any tax deadline falls on a weekend or federal holiday, it’s automatically bumped up to the next business day. For example, April 15, 2023 falls on a Saturday, and Emancipation Day falls on the following Monday, April 17th, so the deadline is Tuesday, April 18th, 2023.
How do I calculate my quarterly estimated payments?
The quickest way to calculate your quarterly payments is to add up your tax liability from last year and divide that number by four. This method doesn’t take into account any changes you have experienced in the past year, but you can use it as a general guide.
For a more exact calculation, use IRS Publication 505 or consult a tax professional.
Should I get a tax refund?
It depends. A big tax refund means you paid too much money to the IRS, while a big tax bill means you didn’t pay nearly enough. Ideally, you should aim to break even each year. This is a goldilocks tax situation meaning you paid the right amount to the IRS.
If you want to avoid paying too much or too little taxes, adjust your W-4. This form tells your employer how much federal and state tax to withhold from each paycheck. If you’re currently facing a large tax bill, increase your W-4 withholdings. If you’re getting a giant refund, decrease your W-4 withholdings.
Adjust your W-4 at any time with your employer, but it’s better to do it as soon as possible. If you need help calculating how much you should withhold from each paycheck, use the IRS tax withholding estimator.
Can I pay taxes due with a credit card?
Yes. The IRS allows credit card payments, but you’ll pay an additional fee to use this method — usually around 2%.
- Form 4868, IRS, 2022
- Publication 509: Tax Calendars, IRS, 2023
- When are federal estimated for individual returns taxes due, TurboTax, November 17 2022
- Failure to file penalty, IRS, November 15 2022
- Failure to pay penalty, IRS, June 13 2022
- State Income Tax Returns, Dates, Refunds E-file, December 1 2022
- Due Dates, Alabama Department of Revenue
- Application for Filing Extension Form, Arizona Department of Revenue
- Deadline & Extensions, Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration
- E-file Calendars, State of California Franchise Tax Board, December 28 2022
- 2022 Colorado Individual Income Tax Return, Colorado Department of Revenue, November 18 2022
- Connecticut Resident Income Tax Information, Connecticut State Department of Revenue Services
- Tax Due Dates, Georgia Department of Revenue
- Important Hawaii Tax Deadlines, State of Hawaii Tax, 2023
- 2022 Individual Income Tax Forms, Indiana Department of Revenue
- Iowa Individual Estimated Income Tax Instructions, Iowa Department of Revenue, January 21 2022
- Pub. KS-1515 Tax Calendar of Due Dates, Kansas Department of Revenue
- Kentucky Individual Income Tax, Kentucky Department of Revenue, 2022
- Individual Income, Louisiana Department of Revenue
- File an extension for filing Massachusetts Personal Income or Fiduciary tax, Massachusetts Department of Revenue, December 30 2022
- Income Tax Due Dates, Minnesota Department of Revenue
- Individual Income Tax Year Changes, Missouri Department of Revenue
- Individual Income Tax, Montana Department of Revenue
- FORM 1040N-V, Nebraska Department of Revenue, 2022
- When to File and Pay, New Jersey Treasury, December 15 2022
- Apply for an extension of time to file an income tax return, New York State Department of Taxation and Finance, December 9 2022
- What to Expect When Filing Taxes This Year, North Carolina Department of Revenue
- Individual Income Tax Deadlines, North Dakota Tax
- Individual Income Tax, Ohio Department of Taxation
- Oklahoma Resident Individual Income Tax Forms and Instructions, Oklahoma Tax Commission, 2022
- 2022 Publication OR-40-EXT, Oregon Department of Revenue, 2022
- Due dates, Extensions, and Prepayments, Utah Income Taxes
- 2022 Form 760 Resident Individual Income Tax Booklet, Virginia
- Individual Income Tax Forms 2022 Tax Filing Season, DC Office of Tax and Revenue
- Tax Filing Extensions For Paper and Electronically Submitted Returns, State of Wisconsin Department of Revenue, December 13 2023
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