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The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) reminded small business owners of the imminent tax filing extension deadline. If you’re among the millions who requested an extension to file your 2022 tax return, you must submit your Form 1040 by Monday, Oct. 16, to avoid potential late filing penalties.

Additionally, if you’re a business operating in disaster-affected regions of California, select areas of Alabama, and Georgia, you also have until Oct. 16, 2023, to file various federal individual and business tax returns and make necessary tax payments.

Special Extensions for Specific Groups: Several exceptions were noted in the IRS’s release:

  1. For those affected by flooding in Illinois and Alaska, the deadline has been extended to Oct. 31, 2023.
  2. Victims of flooding in Vermont have until Nov. 15, 2023, to file.
  3. Recent natural disasters, including the Maui fires and Hurricane Idalia, have affected several regions, including parts of Florida, South Carolina, and Georgia. Those located in the counties of Maui, Hawaii, and many counties in the aforementioned states have been granted an extension until Feb. 24, 2024. The IRS recommends checking the disaster relief page on IRS.gov for a complete list and further updates.
  4. Military members serving in combat zones have a standard 180-day extension from their exit date from the combat zone to file returns and settle any taxes due.

How Can Small Business Owners Prepare? The IRS provides several tools and platforms to aid taxpayers:

  • The IRS’s Free File tool is available until Oct. 16, which offers guided tax preparation software for individuals or families with an adjusted gross income (AGI) of $73,000 or less in 2022. This tool also assists in claiming credits such as the Child Tax Credit and the Earned Income Tax Credit.
  • For those with a 2022 AGI exceeding $73,000 and who feel confident in handling their taxes, the IRS Free File Fillable Forms are accessible.
  • The IRS’s Interactive Tax Assistant tool provides answers to numerous tax-related queries.
  • Multi-language tax information can be accessed by selecting the “English” tab on the IRS website.
  • The IRS Online Account feature displays details to help taxpayers file accurately, including prior AGI amounts and estimated tax payment details.
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Electronic Filing and Payment Options: You can schedule and make federal tax payments until the Oct. 16 deadline. Payment can be processed online, via phone, or the IRS2Go mobile app. Key advantages of electronic payment options include:

  1. Convenience: Flexible payment options when filing electronically or through a tax preparer.
  2. IRS Direct Pay: A feature that facilitates payment directly from bank accounts. An IRS Online Account is necessary for this feature.
  3. Card Payments: Payments via credit, debit, or digital wallets are possible through a payment processor. Do note the processor, not the IRS, may charge a service fee.
  4. IRS2Go Mobile App: Provides mobile-friendly payment options.
  5. EFTPS: This system enables payments online or by phone. Payments must be scheduled by 8 p.m. ET, at least one day before the due date.

Small business owners must adhere to these fast-approaching tax deadlines, especially those in disaster-affected areas. Utilize the IRS’s online resources to ensure a smooth and timely filing process. Remember, staying updated and informed is essential in maintaining the financial health of your business.

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