Time is running out. The October 17 filing extension deadline is just days away. Most taxpayers who requested an extension of time to file their 2021 tax return must file by Monday to avoid the penalty for filing late. This year, the IRS received about 19 million requests for extensions to file until October 17 and urges people to file electronically.


Extension filers who owe taxes should pay as much as possible to reduce interest and penalties. Those who have yet to file a 2021 tax return, owe taxes, and did not request an extension, can generally avoid additional penalties and interest by filing the return and paying any taxes owed as soon as possible.

Some groups have additional time to file.

Here are a few resources on IRS.gov to help last-minute filers:

  • IRS Free File – Available through October 17, the IRS e-file is easy, safe, and the most accurate way to file taxes. There are eight Free File products available in English and two in Spanish. Filing electronically can also help taxpayers determine their earned income tax credit, child and dependent care credit, and recovery rebate credit.
  • Online Payments – Taxpayers can pay online using IRS Direct Pay at no cost or use a debit card, credit card, or Digital Wallet, which may be subject to a payment processing fee. If they’re filing through tax software or a tax preparer, taxpayers can schedule a payment when filing. If taxpayers have a balance and are unable to pay it now, they should apply for a payment plan. The IRS has more information for taxpayers who can’t afford to pay the taxes they owe.
  • Online Account – Individual taxpayers can log into their online account to view the key information from their most recent tax return, such as their adjusted gross income and their economic impact payment amounts, which may help in preparing and filing their returns. They can also view the amount they owe, payment history including estimated tax payments, their payment plan details, and options, digital copies of certain notices, their address on file, and authorization requests from tax professionals.
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