Individual Tax Deadline Moved to May 17, 2021

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced on March 17th that the 2020 individual filing and tax payment deadline has been moved from April 15, 2021 to May 17, 2021. The deadline remains the same for other 2020 returns with an April 15th due date (corporation and trust returns), as well as all 2021 estimated taxes that are due by April 15th. The IRS said more guidance will be issued in the coming days, so be prepared for more updates.

Your team at Santora CPA Group thinks this is a positive move, and we wouldn’t be surprised if the deadline for filing is extended past May.

In coordination with our CPA cohorts, we have been continually lobbying the IRS to push back the filing and payment deadline. Our reasoning for the request is simple: we want to get your returns filed correctly the first time, and we want to make sure we are maximizing opportunities that recent legislation has provided, both at the individual and entity levels.

We believe that the April 15th deadline, with the exception of simplistic returns, would have resulted in 2020 being known as the year of the “amended return.” Why? Because the new tax laws and stimulus programs that were put in place were extremely complex and didn’t have enough guidance from the IRS. We are still waiting for the IRS to answer the questions that inevitably arose when tax law changes were rushed into the tax code. The Employee Retention Credit and PPP loans were extremely powerful stimulus programs, but we still need guidance from the IRS as to how to implement some of the details, not to mention the implementation of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 that was passed last week.

On top of that, let’s not forget that each state has to decide how they want to handle their 2020 individual filing deadline. As of this morning, only Maryland has delayed its individual deadline. We expect most other states to delay their filings as well, but until that happens, we have to assume they won’t change. This, unfortunately, is the world we live in now, one ripe for mistakes, opportunities missed, and having to amend returns that, if not rushed, could be filed correctly.

So, when it comes to tax filings in 2021, we think that slow and steady, in most instances, will eventually result in the best outcome for our clients. Please stay tuned for forthcoming updates that may arise.

Santora CPA Group
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