PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — It’s just five days away — July 15.
That’s the new deadline to file your tax returns for both Pennsylvania and federal income taxes.
Tax Day is usually April 15, but the coronavirus pushed that deadline to Wednesday. The IRS says 10 million Americans have not filed their tax returns yet, some because we owe money and just put it off.
But if you are getting a refund, you may get a little surprise.
“This is the first time that it’s ever happened where the IRS extended not just the filing deadline but the payment deadline as well,” Duquesne University tax professor Bryan Menk told KDKA money editor Jon Delano on Friday.
Menk says taxpayers who held off filing their returns after April 15 do not have to pay a penalty and interest as long as they make the July 15 deadline.
Generally, about 20 to 25 percent of taxpayers end up owing the IRS some money.
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“If you’re getting a refund back, hopefully, you filed immediately and got that money back in your pocket as soon as you could. If you owed money, there’s no incentive to pay before July 15,” says the professor.
It turns out, say tax preparers, most of those filing now are getting refunds.
“Curiously enough, the demographic looks a lot like it would on April 15 – three out of four are getting refunds and a little bit higher depending on your location,” says Mark Steber, the chief tax information office for Jackson Hewitt.
Steber says this year’s late refunds will get a little extra because by law, the IRS is required to pay interest on refunds made after late April.
“It’s a nice little surprise for those who are filing and due a refund,” he says.
Now taxpayers can get another extension until Oct. 15 to file paperwork, but if you owe money you must pay it by Wednesday or you will be charged interest and penalty.