If you miss thewith the IRS, you're delaying so much more than just . In fact, you'd be leaving a lot of money on the table if you don't file your tax return on time -- including of your and a if the IRS underestimated by using an older tax form from you.
Since your 2020 tax information is essential for the IRS to determine how much money you'll receive in 2021, we'll give you four reasons whyis important this year -- as well as how could affect you.
On the flip side, if you've already filed your 2020 tax return but you're still waiting on your refund, we'll tell you. You might also want to know why that is important, how your tax return could and how to see if the IRS is holding a tax refund by May 17. This story is updated regularly.
No. 1: Get your full advance child tax credit amount
as part of the is expected go out in July, and you may be eligible to receive up to $3,600 over 7 payments if . To determine , the IRS needs to know your . That's why it's important to file your 2020 taxes by May 17 so the IRS is using your most recent tax figures when it calculates your payments. Otherwise, your payment may be smaller than you are eligible for.
The IRS said qualifying families will have another opportunity to update changes to income, filing status and the number of qualifying children, with more information, but didn't provide specifics on how or when. We've reached out to IRS for details on how families will be able to inform the agency of changes.
No. 2: Receive your plus-up stimulus payment
If you've received youryou may be due a , too, but only if the IRS has your 2020 tax return. If the IRS based your payment on your 2019 tax return but your 2020 federal tax return shows you qualify for more money for that third payment, the IRS will send you the difference as a separate .
No. 3: Claim your missing stimulus money from first two checks
Your federal tax returns this year are also how you'll recover any money the IRS owes you from the. If you either didn't get a payment or got less than you were , you can as a rebate credit when you file this year. -- those who aren't normally required to file a tax return. If you wait to file your taxes closer to a new, later due date, you're also , which will be bundled .
No. 4: Get the right amount for the third check
The IRS uses, if it has it, to determine the amount you'd get in your . Specifically, the IRS looks at the , on your 2020 form to help figure out your payment by using a .
But the tax agency will use your 2019 return if your 2020 taxes haven't been accepted by the time your payment is sent. That could work in your favor if your income from 2019 was lower than your income from 2020. (Youin most cases.)
However, if your 2020 tax return would, like if you , you'll want to file as soon as possible, so the IRS processes your 2020 taxes before releasing . Here's what should know.
Is the May 17 federal deadline the same as my state's tax return due date?
This year, according to the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants, 36 states have shifted their deadlines. Check with your state's tax agency for the specific deadline.
What should I do if I can't make the May 17 deadline?
If you need time beyond May 17 you can, which gives you more time to complete and send your paperwork to the IRS. The IRS said individual taxpayers don't need to file forms or call the IRS to qualify for the extension.
The new extension doesn't get you off the hook for estimated tax payments, however. The IRS said the May 17 deadline doesn't apply to those who make estimated payments, which were still due on April 15.
For more details on taxes this year, we spell out theand .