The Treasury Department (“Treasury”) and Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) issued informal guidance via News Release IR- 2021-59 (the “Release”) on March 17, 2021, stating that the federal income tax filing and payment due date for individuals for the 2020 tax year is extended from April 15, 2021, to May 17, 2021 (the “Automatic Extension”). The IRS indicated in the Release that formal guidance regarding the Automatic Extension will be provided in the coming days.
Importantly, the Automatic Extension does not apply to first quarter estimated tax payments for individuals whose income isn’t subject to income tax withholding, including self-employment income, interest, dividends, alimony or rental income. First quarter estimated tax payments are still due by April 15, 2021.
Finally, the Release cautions taxpayers that the Automatic Extension applies only to individual federal income taxes, not to any state tax filing or payment deadlines. Individual taxpayers that anticipate delaying the filing and payment of their federal income tax returns until after April 15, 2021, should consult with their tax advisors regarding any applicable state deadlines (which may be extended at the election of states following this Release).
Thompson Coburn continues to monitor these important developments in the extension of the individual tax filing and payment deadline.