Important Dates & Deadlines for Tax Season 2019-2020

2019-2020 important tax dates

Tax Day or Tax Season isn’t just the day you file your taxes. every year. 

You may already be aware of the IRS income tax deadline of April 15th, the date you must file your federal tax return by (unless you file and receive an extension). This is the last day you have to find out if you have taxes owed to be paid, or if you’ll get a refund.

But did you know there are many important tax dates and deadlines throughout the year that could apply to you, depending on your individual situation?

Do you wait until the last minute every year to file your taxes and risk missing the most important tax deadline?

Whether it’s filing your tax return, getting an extension, or staying on top of quarterly tax payment schedules, knowing these dates can have a significant impact and save you money. 

Late filing or payments can incur additional fees, and the IRS doesn’t take that lightly. In fact, there was a 91.2% conviction rate for IRS tax criminal cases in 2019, according to a report by Bloomberg

We’ve created a month-by-month calendar of the important federal tax dates and deadlines for the 2019 and 2020 tax season below.

If you’d like your own copy of this calendar, click HERE to download as a PDF file or print it out.

December 31st Year-End Checklist

You’ll soon be receiving copies of your yearly tax forms and statements, so it’s a best practice to gather all your receipts, make a list of which tax forms you’re waiting on, and make sure there’s no errors in your book keeping or accounting. Then once your tax forms are in, you’ll only need to enter your numbers and hit that file button!

December 31st is also the last day you can claim contributions made to charity. Any contributions after December 31st will have to wait to be claimed on next year’s tax return. 

If you have a Flexible Spending Account, you must use up all the funds by December 31st.

Lower your tax rate by maximizing your 401(k) contributions by December 31st. One top tip is if your next pay cycle is not until a few days after the New Year, ask your employer if they can make the contribution early for you. 

Quarterly Tax Payments

If you generally owe taxes or make estimated quarterly payments to not have a giant tax bill at once, here’s the important deadlines you need to know.

January 15th: 4th Quarter 2019 Estimated Tax Payment Due

April 15th: 1st Quarter 2020 Estimated Tax Payment Due

June 15th: 2nd Quarter 2020 Estimated Tax Payment Due

September 15th: 3rd Quarter 2020 Estimated Tax Payment Due

When Can I File My Taxes?

Tax filing officially opens on January 21st so hopefully you’ve done your due diligence in preparation in December. If you’re getting a refund then there’s no reason to delay. The earlier you file, the quicker you’ll receive your refund.

When are My Taxes Due?

April 15th is the last day you have to complete and file your tax return or request an extension.

If you don’t, then the IRS can assess a failure-to-pay penalty worth up to 25% of your unpaid tax. If you are late 60 days, the IRS can assesses a penalty of $210 or 100% of the tax you owe, whichever is less. Don’t be late or it will cost you.

This is also the deadline if there are previous years you haven’t filed your taxes for. You are able to file a return for up to the previous three years, or 2016.

What if I live outside the United States?

If you live abroad but must file U.S. taxes, you must file your 2019 federal tax return by June 15th. 

However, if you owed taxes, you’re still required to pay them by April 15th to avoid penalties and interest, so hopefully you don’t forget about the quarterly payment deadline. 

What if I get an extension?

If you receive an extension for filing your tax return, the new deadline for the 2019 tax year is Oct. 15, 2020.

Additional Deadlines

If you’d like your Individual Retirement Account (IRA) or Health Savings Account (HSA) contributions to be applied towards your 2019 tax return, you have until April 15th to make your final contribution. Delaying filing your taxes until then can help take advantage of tax savings for 2019.

Conclusion

The end of 2019 is approaching quickly and it pays off to know when it comes to your tax deadlines.

You may be tempted to wait until the last moment, but keeping these important dates fresh in your mind can also urge you to find opportunities to save money or get extra tax deductions between now and the April 15th tax day deadline.

Get your best refund by taking advantage of these tax deduction tips!

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