Undoubtedly, filing one’s taxes can easily become the most stressful situation of the year – especially in the middle of a pandemic. So, the American government has pushed the tax deadline to May 17, 2021 – here’s everything you need to know!
Tax Deadline Pushed
Earlier this month, the IRS and Treasury Department moved the tax deadline from April 15 to May 17, allowing Americans to relax amid the COVID-19 struggle. “This continues to be a tough time for many people, and the IRS wants to continue to do everything possible to help taxpayers navigate the unusual circumstances related to the pandemic, while also working on important tax administration responsibilities,” IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig said in the statement.
Need even more time? As always, taxpayers can fill out Form 4868 and have an extension until October 15. This is only available for federal taxes, and one will need to check with their state for similar options for state or local taxes. Meanwhile, one can also make the tax payments quarterly – just make sure you don’t miss the payments!
Much of this is tied to the recent $1.9 trillion COVID-19 aid package, called The American Rescue Plan. For those who don’t know, this is one of the most extensive relief programs in United States history, even adjusting for inflation. Many around the country feel incredibly thankful for the extension and have made their support of the decision loud and clear…
2021 Tax Rules
So far, reaction to both The American Rescue Plan and the tax extension has been reasonably positive. New Jersey Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr. and Massachusetts Rep. Richard Neal are among the many vocal supporters of the decision in Congress. “This extension is absolutely necessary to give Americans some needed flexibility in a time of unprecedented crisis,” said House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee Chairman Bill Pascrell Jr., D-N.J., and House Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal, D-Mass. “Under titanic stress and strain, American taxpayers and tax preparers must have more time to file tax returns.”
This year around, taxpayers who are doing taxes themselves will want to pay careful attention, as there are many new rules this time around. For example, the American Rescue Plan will also change the levels at which no taxes are charged. That includes payers with a 2020 gross income of less than $150,000. Their first $10,200 of unemployment income for singles, or $20,400 for married couples filing jointly are now tax-free. Meanwhile, there have also been changes to the child tax credit. Children aged six to 17 have a $3,000 tax credit, while those under six years old can get $3,600 a year.
Although the United States government has pushed the tax deadline, Rettig said it’s still best to pay that tax bill as soon as possible! “Filing electronically with direct deposit is the quickest way to get refunds,” he said. “It can help some taxpayers more quickly receive any remaining stimulus payments they may be entitled to.”