Robert J. Fedor, Esq., L.L.C.

Advice for indivdiuals who missed the Oct. 15 tax deadline

We recently wrote a blog post about the recent Oct. 15 tax deadline for those individuals who were previously granted a six month tax extension. That deadline has now passed and those taxpayers who failed to meet the Oct. 15 deadline may now be in a panic.

According to the Internal Revenue Service, some 12 million people were granted a six-month extension to file and pay tax returns. There are a number of reasons why an individual may choose to request an extension of time to file and pay taxes. One reason may be that the individual did not have the funds available in April. For some of these individuals, Oct. 15 may come and go with little change in their financial status or ability to pay taxes.

For those individuals who are struggling to pay tax debt, the IRS has a program called the Fresh Start Program. Individual taxpayers who owe less than $50,000 in tax debt can apply for acceptance into the Fresh Start Program online. Once enrolled, individuals are able to set up a payment plan agreement with the IRS to work towards resolving outstanding tax debt.

Individuals who failed to meet the Oct. 15 deadline are subject to late filing and payment penalties. For these reasons, individuals who are not able to pay their taxes are still advised to file on time to avoid the additional late filing fines.

While not being able to afford to pay taxes does not exempt an individual of tax liability, the IRS is more likely to work with a taxpayer who takes legitimate steps towards resolving their tax debt. In addition to enrollment in the IRS's Fresh Start Program, the IRS may allow individuals who are experiencing financial hardships to skip or delay payments until a later date.

Individuals who are delinquent in filing or paying taxes would be wise to contact a tax attorney for advice. In most cases, a taxpayer's inaction causes the most damage and may result in harsh penalties and possible criminal charges.

Source: Fox Business, "Miss the Final Tax Deadline? Here’s What You Must Do," Bonnie Lee, Oct. 17, 2013

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