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The May 17 tax deadline is coming up: Here’s everything you need to know


By Megan Henney

This year, the IRS extended the traditional tax-filing deadline from April 15 to May 17, giving most taxpayers an extra month to prepare their filings amid a slew of pandemic-related policy changes included in the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan.

As of May 7, the IRS had processed about 116 million returns. By comparison, it had received about 126.7 million returns. The agency has issued roughly 84 million refunds so far, down 3.2% from this point in 2020.

If you haven’t filed yet, here’s what you need to know:

Taxpayers can request an extension to Oct. 15

If you haven’t filed your taxes yet, don’t worry — there’s still time to request an extension to Oct. 15. If you’re an individual, you can file for an extension online by filling out Form 4868 using the IRS’s “Free File” tool. The form requires an estimate of your tax liability.


But beware, if you owe taxes to the federal government, payments are still due on May 17. The IRS offers some payment plans to individuals who are unable to pay their taxes in full. The more you pay by May 17, the less interest and penalty charges you’ll owe.

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