The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced that the deadline for filing income declarations and paying federal income taxes had been extended by about a month – until May 17, instead of the usual date, April 15. According to Reuters, the reason for this decision was pressure from Democrats in Congress and the coronavirus pandemic.
The IRS said in a statement that the extension of the deadline would be automatic: taxpayers will not have to fill out additional forms unnecessarily or pay fines and penalties for taxes that must be paid between April 15 and May 17.
Previously, the IRS insisted on maintaining the traditional deadline for filing returns to speed up refunds to taxpayers. A year ago, during the coronavirus pandemic, the IRS postponed the deadline for filing returns and paying taxes by three months until July 15.
“Even with the deadline extended, we encourage taxpayers to consider filing as soon as possible, especially those who are owed refunds,” the IRS said in a statement. The service added that filing returns electronically with a bank account number can help taxpayers quickly receive any payments related to the government’s plan to help citizens affected economically by the pandemic.
Richard Neal, Chairman of the House Budget Committee, and Bill Pascrell, Chairman of the Oversight Subcommittee, who had pushed for a postponement of the end of the tax season, praised the decision. Democrats have been pressing the IRS to extend the deadline in part because this year’s tax filing season started two weeks later than last year.