There are many things you can do today, beyond just filing your federal income tax return.
If you haven’t yet filed your 2021 federal income taxes, the time is running out. For most people, April 18 is the deadline for filing their tax returns. That’s today! For residents of Massachusetts and Maine, the deadline is April 19. You should not only be concerned about filing your federal tax returns, but there are other deadlines that you need to think about.
If you are self-employed, saving for retirement, college, or have a health savings plan, you might need to act today. You might also have to act today if you are facing a tax deadline. You could be subject to additional taxes, penalties or interest if you miss a deadline. Here are 10 deadlines that you shouldn’t miss for tax today. You can check them out to find out if there is anything unexpected.
- Federal Income Tax Returns
The federal personal income tax return is the most important due date on the tax calendar. It falls on an average April 15th, but it was moved to April 18 due to a Washington, D.C. holiday. Residents of Maine and Massachusetts can extend the deadline to April 19.
You must file your tax return for the 2021 year. This means that you must report income received between January 1 and December 31, 2021, unless you are a fiscal year filer which is very rare. To report your 2021 income and adjustments, as well as credits, use Form 1040. It is faster to file your return electronically than to mail it in. This is especially true in this year’s case, as the IRS has a huge backlog. E-filing your tax return will make it easier to get your refund. Direct deposit is a better option than a paper check. This will also speed up your refund.
- Extension requests
You can request an extension if you are unable to file your income tax returns on time. This is available until October 17. To get an extension, however, you need to request it before the end of the current day (residents in Maine and Massachusetts can apply until tomorrow). You can either fill out Form 4868, or submit an electronic tax payment to request the extension.
Remember that your extension to file your tax return does not extend your time to pay your taxes. It is still your responsibility to calculate the tax you owe, and to pay your tax bill before midnight tonight. You will be charged interest and penalized by the IRS if you fail to pay your tax bill on time.
- Estimated Tax Payments
Uncle Sam expects that you pay your taxes every year regardless of whether you file an income tax return only once per year. If you work for a company, these tax payments are withheld from the paycheck and sent by your employer to the IRS. If you are self-employed, or receive income from other sources, your employer will withhold the tax payment and send it to the IRS.
Today is the due date for the first estimated tax payment in 2022. This payment covers the estimated tax amount due for income received between January 1, 2022, and March 31, 2022. To calculate and pay your estimated taxes, use Form 1040-ES. You can only make one estimated tax payment for 2022 tax year if at least two-thirds your income comes from fishing or farming. The IRS can impose a severe penalty if you fail to pay enough taxes during the year, either withholding or estimated payments.
- 2021 IRA Contributions
You have until tomorrow, for Massachusetts and Maine residents, to add more money to an IRA to count toward your 2021 contributions. You have until the tax return filing deadline to fund an IRA in that year. There are limitations on how much you can contribute each year to an IRA. You can save up to $6,000 for 2021 in an IRA – $7,000 if your age is 50 or older.
It’s a smart idea to max out your 2021 IRA contributions before the tax deadline. First, withdrawals from a Roth IRA can be tax-free, but contributions to a traditional IRA may be tax deductible. Whether you contribute to a Roth IRA or a traditional IRA, your tax bill can be reduced now or in the long-term.
People with low- or moderate incomes who contribute to an IRA may also be eligible for the Saver’s Credit. This credit can be worth up to $1,000 ($2,000 for joint filers).
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- Solo 401(k), and SEP Contributions for 2021
Individuals who are self-employed and saving for retirement have until April 18th to save money in a Solo 401k plan or Simplified Employee pension (SEP) IRA. This deadline is for Massachusetts residents only. The deadline for filing extensions to tax returns is October 17 for those who request one.
A self-employed person can contribute as much as $58,000 to a Solo401(k) for 2021 – $64,500 if they are 50 years old or older. These amounts will increase to $61,000 and $67,000.50 for 2022. These contributions are so high because both employees and employers can contribute, but the April 18 deadline applies only to employer contributions.
For 2021, the maximum SEP IRA contribution is $58,000 (or $61,000 in 2022). Employers can only contribute to a SEP IRA. The employer must also contribute the same amount for each employee as they have contributed.