Tax tips for last-minute filers

Apr. 12, 2013 @ 05:00 AM

The April 15 tax-filing deadline is a few days away, and the Internal Revenue Service has provided a list of tips for last-minute filers.

• File on time, and pay as much as you can. Filing on time ensures you will avoid the late-filing penalty, and paying a portion of your bill reduces the interest charges.

* Request a payment agreement. If you can’t make your full payment, contact or fill out Form 9465 with your tax return.* Don’t ignore your tax bill. Contact the IRS immediately if you can’t make a payment, or risk facing interest and penalties.

* Filing an extension does not give you extra time to pay. You can request an extension for up to six months, until Oct. 15. It does not extend the time you have to pay any taxes. Interest and/or penalties will begin to accrue after April 15.

* Bring all required paperwork and double check all returns. Some of the most common mistakes made by last-minute filers are incorrect names, social security numbers or bank account numbers.

* Sign all forms. An unsigned tax return is like an unsigned check, meaning it is invalid. Both spouses must sign a joint return, and dates must be included.