What Happens if I Miss a Tax Deadline?

Miss a Tax DeadlineOf all the important deadlines in life, perhaps none causes as much stress and anxiety as the deadline to file taxes. While filing deadlines are discussed often and reminders are posted frequently, year after year there are people who wait until the last possible moment to file. Some even miss the deadline altogether.

So just what does happen if you miss a tax deadline? Contrary to popular belief, there is no special taskforce that springs into action at the stroke of midnight paying a personal visit to everyone who missed the deadline. There is no need to panic.

There is also no need to continue to put off filing either. Once you know you have missed the deadline, the best thing you can do is to take immediate steps to complete your taxes as soon as possible. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

You Still Have Time to File Electronically

Even if you missed the April 15th deadline to file your taxes, you have until October 15th to use the IRS E-File system. Using this system is not only safe and easy, but it also gives you an immediate confirmation that the IRS did indeed receive your tax return. E-File is a very reliable and accurate method of filing taxes and still gives you choices on how to receive your refund, including direct deposit.

Related: Change in Tax Rules.


If you know that you will be receiving a refund from your tax filings, it is better to complete your taxes as soon as possible to ensure you receive the refund as soon as possible. On the other hand, if you know you will owe taxes, it is even more important that you file right away to avoid additional penalties and interest charges. You could incur penalties as much as 5-25% each month that you do not file.

Payment Arrangement

Believe it or not, the IRS will work with you if you need to make a payment arrangement on taxes you owe. Some people put off filing taxes knowing that they owe money, wanting to hold off on paying the money for as long as possible. The truth is, you are better off filing and making a payment arrangement with the IRS to avoid penalties. In the long run, you will owe less money this way.

Contact an Accountant

In many situations, the reason a person puts off filing their taxes is because they are attempting to do their own filing and have a hard time understanding the best way to complete it. This is when an experienced and knowledgeable accountant, like Hacker Accounting can be of assistance. Trust our experience of years of filing taxes for both individuals and businesses. We can help you get things on track in no time and get that refund in your pocket right away!

Call us today for more information about our services – 602-375-5251.


Chris Hacker
Chris has been working in the bookkeeping and accounting field for over 15 years preparing business, income and payroll taxes. Chris has a bachelor’s degree from Arizona State and is an Enrolled Agent with the Internal Revenue Service.