Any American who hasn't filed their federal taxes yet can now breathe a big sigh of relief.
The deadline—which falls every year on April 15—has now been pushed back to July 15. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin made the announcement Friday, noting that Americans who take advantage of the extra time won't face any extra interest or penalties.
It's a move that should alleviate stress for many families. With so much scary stuff going on in the world, the last thing anyone should have to worry about is digging up receipts, tracking down financial statements and crunching numbers to file their tax return. Even more importantly, Americans who have been laid off as businesses across the country shut down thanks to the coronavirus pandemic shouldn't have to scramble to come up with a tax payment.
There are a couple of things to keep in mind, however:
- Mnuchin's announcement applies to federal taxes—states can make their own decisions, so check to see what yours is doing.
- Secondly, Mnuchin notes that if you're among those expecting a federal tax refund, you might want to go ahead and just file now. The sooner you send in your return, the sooner you'll see that money.
Extending the tax deadline is just one of several moves the federal government is making to help relieve the massive financial impact of the outbreak. Lawmakers are still negotiating on a bill to send direct cash payments to Americans. One House bill proposes sending as much as $2,000 to every adult, and $1,000 for every child. A Senate proposal would give $1,200 to adults under a certain income level, with another $500 per child. It's support that we need now more than ever, and hopefully, lawmakers will move swiftly.