What to do if you missed the April tax filing deadline

If you missed the April 17 tax filing deadline for your 2011 return, the IRS has some advice for you.

First, don’t panic. But do file your return as soon as possible. If you owe money on the return, the penalty for late filing and interest on the amount you owe will continue to grow until you file. E-filing is the fastest way to file, and this option is available on 2011 tax returns through October 15, 2012.

Second, pay as much of the tax you owe as you can. If you cannot pay the full amount of tax due with your return, you can ask to make monthly installment payments to the IRS. File Form 9465, “Installment Agreement Request,” or apply online using the IRS Online Payment Agreement Application available at the IRS website (www.irs.gov).

Third, any additional delay in filing will just increase any penalty and interest charges. These include a late filing penalty, a late payment penalty, and interest on taxes not paid by April 17.

If you haven’t filed your return, the problem will not go away by itself. File your return, and if you can’t pay the tax owed, inform the IRS of your current financial situation.

About Brenda J. McGivern, CPA

Brenda McGivern started her own certified public accounting and management consulting firm in October 2001. The full service CPA firm provides tax and accounting solutions to meet the needs of today’s small business and individual. Brenda McGivern has become a trusted advisor and valuable resource her clients rely on for timely, accurate assistance when they need it.

Before starting the firm, she worked as an accountant for three years at a local firm and prior to that five years at a large international CPA firm in Boston. She has performed the following tax services: federal, state and local tax planning, international tax planning, estate and succession planning, mergers and acquisitions, capital retention and IRS representation. She has also coordinated assurance engagements, such as financial statement audits, reviews and compilations from the planning phase through the reporting phase. She has prepared and reviewed regulatory filings for numerous regulatory agencies including the Security and Exchange Commission.

Prior to these positions she was selected from over 2,000 candidates into an eight-person intensive financial management program at an international technology company. The program consisted of graduate level classroom study and two six-month rotational assignments in financial operations.

She graduated cum laude from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and holds a Bachelors Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in accounting. McGivern also holds a license in Massachusetts as a Certified Public Accountant and is a member of the American Society of Certified Public Accountants and the Massachusetts Society of Certified Public Accountants. She resides in Stoughton, Massachusetts with her husband Brian, and their sons Sean, Ryan and Conor and their dog, Davis.

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