Keep Your Eye on the (Tax Deadline) Target

The general public may not know it, but for CPAs, life revolves around deadlines. Not a month goes by when there isn’t one deadline or another for filing a tax return for something. Here’s a brief reminder of some upcoming deadlines.

September 15-the following calendar year entities (i.e. year ended 12/31/10) that filed an extension by March 15 will have their extension end on 9/15/11, so any returns filed after this date will be delinquent:
-corporations (either “C” or “S”)
-LLCs (either single-member or multi-member) that filed an election to be recognized as an “S” corporation
-partnerships or multi-member LLCs that have not filed an election to be recognized as an “S” corporation. Note that these returns had original due dates of April 18, but the extension only runs for five months (compared to six months, for a corporation)

For all of these returns, remember that although they are all “pass-through” entities, and don’t pay any tax (with the exception of a “C” corporation), there are still penalties that can be levied for filing late returns.

October 15-this is the final deadline for all individual returns for which an extension was filed by April 18. There are a couple of things to remember; first, some states may have a different final extended due date, so check your state’s requirements. Second, although October 15 is the extended deadline for filing the federal individual income tax return, any tax paid after the original due date (April 18) will incur late payment penalties and interest. So if you’re just wrapping up your personal return now, and have a balance due, there will be additional charges to pay.

November 15-if you are a responsible person for a calendar year tax exempt organization, the original due date for filing Form 990 was May 15, and two three-month extensions are allowed, bringing the final due date to November 15. There are three different 990 “series” returns that can be filed (990 long form, 990-EZ short form, and 990-N ‘e-postcard’), and all tax exempt organizations must file at least one (as determined by the annual revenue). As with pass-through entities, even though tax exempt organizations by nature don’t pay tax, there are penalties for filing a late return.

So keep your eye on the target, and please pass along this information to anybody who may need a reminder. Let me know your thoughts about the impending deadlines, or else let me know what you’d like me to write about in future articles.

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