April 05, 1989
Deadline Approaching to File for An Extension
With less than two full weeks left in the 1989 tax filing
season, many taxpayers who have not filed yet may be thinking about
getting an extension of time to file their returns. This year the
Internal Revenue Service expects to receive over six million
requests for extension of time to file returns, up nine percent over
the 5.7 million received last year.
To receive an extension, taxpayers must file Form 4868,
"Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual
Income Tax Return," by April 17, 1989, and include the expected
amount of tax due along with Form 4868. These taxpayers then have
an extra four months, until August 15, to file their return. The
extension is automatic, and taxpayers do not have to give a reason
for asking for the extension.
The extension of time to file is not an extension of time to
pay the tax due, and it is available only for filers of Form 1040 or
1040A. If you don't pay the amount of tax due when you file Form
4868, you will owe interest and may also be charged penalties.
The IRS noted that the special two-month automatic extension of
time to file which applied last year for taxpayers traveling outside
the United States or Puerto Rico during the two-week period that
included April 15 does not apply for 1988 returns. Instead, the
two-month extension is available only for taxpayers who both live
and have their main place of business outside the U.S. and Puerto
Rico, or for taxpayers in military or naval service outside the U.S.
or Puerto Rico.
Form 4868 is available at most IRS offices and from IRS forms
distribution sites by calling toll-free 1-800-424-3676.
So far this filing season receipts of returns are just about
even with last year; over 58,128,000 returns were received by March
31, up slightly from the 58,046,000 at the same point last filing
season. Processing, however, continues at a faster pace. The IRS
processed 48,050,000 returns this year by March 31, compared to
47,024,000 last year, a 2.2 percent increase.
Refunds are also up over last year. As of March 31 the IRS
certified over 37 million refunds, compared to 36 million last year
at this time. The average refund so far is $819.28, compared to
$824.74 last year.
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