How to extend your tax deadline

WASHINGTON - Monday is the day, tax day is upon us.

But if you already know that midnight sprint to the post office is not going to happen, then you do have some options.

Most taxpayers can get a six month extension if they ask for one, it will push that deadline to October 15, but you need to do it now. 

Luckily it is pretty easy.  All you need to do is log on to and search for form 4868.  If you think you're owed a refund, or are breaking even, getting an extension is as simple as filling out that form.  The IRS will send you a confirmation number for your records and you don't need to mail in a hard copy.

If you're uncomfortable maneuvering through the web, you can do it the "old school" way and complete and return a paper version.  There will be an address provided on the form, and be sure you meet the April 15 deadline.

But what happens if you think you owe money?  Remember this is an extension of the time to file your return, not an extension of the time to pay.

You'll need to figure out an estimate and send that payment with your extension, or you'll risk interest, late fees or penalties.  It's easiest to pay using your debit or credit card, or through e-file.

Keep in mind if you've asked for an extension from the IRS, you'll probably have to file a separate one with your home state as well.

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