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How to file and pay your 2021 taxes online

How to file and pay your 2021 taxes online
Written by Publishing Team

In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic surprised everyone, including the IRS, and the deadline for filing federal tax payments has been moved from the usual mid-April date to July 15. In 2021, the due date has been pushed back to May 17, 2021. But for now, it looks like we’ll be back to our traditional mid-April due dates.

In fact, since the tax deadline cannot be on the same day as a public holiday, most of us have until April 18 (April 15 is Emancipation Day in the capital). If you live in Maine or Massachusetts, you already have until April 19 because of Patriot Day. Need an extension? After you have applied for this extension, you have until October 17th.

However, the IRS has also made clear that the pandemic is still slowing down some processes, such as processing returns filed on paper. As a result, it may not be a bad idea to start working on these taxes as soon as possible — and submit them online. In fact, whether you’re a full-time worker dealing with a single 1040 employee or a freelancer / piece-worker getting a string of 1099s, the fastest way to pay money these days is to do it online.

The IRS offers a series of directions on its website to help US citizens know their taxes, report those taxes, and submit payments (or request a refund) using the online electronic file method. Here’s a summary of what’s available and where you can find it.

Your first stop: IRS.gov

Your first stop: IRS.gov

How do I submit a file online?

There are several ways to file online, depending on your income and your comfort level with handling the entire income tax process.

If your adjusted gross income is $73,000 or less, you can use the IRS Free File option. The site offers a number of third-party services that can help you collect and file your taxes for free. Of course, this is assuming the third party isn’t trying to trick you into paying more than you should; Back in April of 2019, ProPublica It revealed that TurboTax and other suppliers were intentionally hiding pages for their free services in order to convince taxpayers to purchase additional features. As a result, in early 2020, the IRS published rules prohibiting these practices. However, it is useful to be careful.

The free file is available to those with incomes of $73,000 or less.

The free file is available to those with incomes of $73,000 or less.

If your income is above $73,000, you can still use the fillable forms provided by IRS Free File, but you don’t get support for the free program, and you can’t do your state taxes through this method. Forms will be available from January 24th. (If you really want to pay your taxes, you may want to check out the IRS page on tax advice, which includes how to handle things like temporary job economy earnings.)

If you are not a professional in filling out taxes, you will either have to use an electronic file with one of the available software solutions or find a tax preparer who can do it for you. For those with incomes of $58,000 or less, the IRS has a program called Voluntary Income Tax Assistance (VITA) to help with tax preparation; There is also a Tax Advice for the Elderly (TCE) for people age 60 or older. The page describing these programs has a locator tool so you can find one of these sites near you; Given the current pandemic, a lot of help is likely to be given over the phone or via video conferencing.

If you use a tax preparer, the person or company doing your taxes must be authorized to use the electronic file; If you don’t already have a tax professional, you can find one on the IRS website.

How can I pay online?

The IRS lists a variety of ways you can pay your taxes online.

If you use tax preparation software or your taxes have been prepared by a tax professional, you can ask the IRS to withdraw funds directly from your bank account via the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS) at the same time you file. Know that according to the IRS, it can take up to five business days to process a new registration.

You can also use IRS Direct Pay to withdraw money from a checking or savings account. Finally, you can use a credit or debit card; However, there is a fee involved (since the IRS will not absorb what your credit card company charges for the service). In fact, if you use a credit card, you may have to add up to 1.98 percent of the payment amount.

How can I get my money back?

One way the IRS tries to convince you to file online is by assuring you that you’ll get your money back faster — in less than 21 days, in most cases, although there are exceptions. Once you submit, you can check the status of your refund online. You can also download the official IRS2Go mobile app, which allows you to check the status of your refund, pay taxes, and get other information.

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