A Guide to Tax Filing Deadlines and Extensions

Jacqueline DeMarco

Writer

Every spring, before we can start to enjoy the warming weather and the beautiful flowers, we all have to get past one big hurdle so we can start to relax — tax day. Most of us dread mid-April when we have to file our taxes due. But once it’s over, we can finally enjoy the spring season.

Most taxpayers only pay their taxes once when filing their annual returns. However, some individuals need to make quarterly estimated tax payments in addition to filing the annual return. 

So, when are taxes due? To make sure you have all your bases covered, let’s look at when annual tax returns are due in 2024 and if you need to file quarterly estimated payments. 

Erika Taught Me

  • Dividends are a portion of a company's profits paid to shareholders
  • Investors can use dividend stocks to earn income outside of work
  • Dividend payouts are determined by the company's board of directors and can change over time
  • Dividends are taxed as earned income unless dividend-earning stocks are purchased in a tax-advantaged retirement account
  • Many dividends are paid quarterly, but they can also be paid monthly or even just twice a year

What is a tax return?

If you live in the United States, a tax return is a document you file with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) each year. Your tax return includes information about your income, expenses, and other key financial details. These details help determine whether you owe taxes or if you will receive a refund). 

When it's time to file your tax return, you will report any sources of income. Common sources of income include wages, business profits, interest, investment gains, and dividends.

You will also declare any deductions and credits you have. Deductions can include expenses like business expenses, mortgage interest, medical expenses, and charitable contributions. Credits can reduce the amount of tax you owe on a dollar-for-dollar basis, such as the child tax credit or student loan interest deduction. Both help you spend less on taxes, so the more you can rightfully claim, the better.

When are tax returns due? 

Every year, you need to file your annual taxes by April 15th. If the 15th of April falls on a legal holiday, or a Saturday or Sunday, the IRS pushes the deadline to the next business day.

You need to have your tax returned properly postmarked and deposited in the mail by the official tax deadline each year to file your taxes on time.

In 2024, you need to file your 2023 annual tax return by Monday, April 15th.

When are estimated taxes due?

We hate to break it to you, but you may have to pay taxes more than once a year. There’s a good chance you don’t need to pay estimated taxes each quarter, but many individuals do.

Quarterly estimated tax payments may be required if you have income that is not subject to withholding. This is typically income from being self-employed. If you expect to owe more than $1,000 in taxes when you file you'll want to discuss the possibility of paying quarterly with your accountant.

The following table outlines the dates each year for filing each quarter's estimated tax payment:

Payment PeriodDue Date
January 1 – March 31April 15
April 1 – May 31June 15
June 1 – August 31September 15
September 1 – December 31January 15 of the following year
Woman holding document and laptop: When are Taxes Due? A Guide to Filing Deadlines and Extensions

How to file for a tax extension

If, for whatever reason, you can’t file your annual federal tax return on time, you can file an extension with the IRS.

To qualify for a tax extension, you have to file your request by the tax return due date. You can file this extension request for free, and doing so will extend your return filing date until October 15th. Similar to the original tax deadline on April 15th, if October 15th falls on a holiday or weekend date, your deadline moves to the next business day.

Keep in mind that filing for an extension only gives you more time to file. It does not change the due date you need to pay your taxes. So if you owe money you'll still need to pay that by the April deadline.

What to do if you miss the tax deadline

You got sick, were slammed with work, or got stuck traveling, and the next thing you know, tax day has come and gone. It happens. Ideally, you will request an extension before the tax deadline passes in April. But if you miss the deadline for filing taxes, file your tax return as soon as you can and pay any outstanding taxes that you owe as soon as possible. Interest and late fees will be accruing during the delay.

If you can’t afford to pay all of your taxes, you can apply for an installment payment agreement using the IRS Online Payment Agreement tool

Where can I get help with my taxes?

Filing your taxes can feel overwhelming. If you feel like you need a helping hand to get through tax season in one piece, you have options for where to turn for support.

How much you earn will impact your decision here. If you or your household make less than $73,000 per year, you can use the IRS Free File program, which gives you access to free tax preparation software. This software comes from commercial tax software companies.

Speaking of which — if you earn more than $73,000 a year, you can always purchase software like TurboTax. This software can help guide you through the process and you can often upgrade to speak with a tax preparation professional if you need extra help.

If your budget allows, you can hire a tax professional like a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). Doing so is the easiest way to get the job done, but it will cost you a bit more. That being said, an experienced professional may be able to save you money on your taxes due to their intricate knowledge of deductions and tax credits.

What is a tax refund?

A tax refund is a reimbursement of excess taxes that you pay to the government throughout the year. Whether you had too many taxes withheld from your paycheck or you made more estimated payments than you needed to, you will get your money back if you overpaid.

If you are a salaried employee, the amount withheld depends on your income, filing status, and the information you submit on your W-4 form.

Related: How do taxes work?

FAQs

Taxes Due: Are state and federal taxes due on the same day?

In some cases, state and federal tax filing deadlines are on the same day. All states have varying filing deadlines, so double-check what date your state follows to make sure you don’t accidentally miss your state income tax deadline.

Taxes Due: How do I know if I need to file estimated taxes?

If you aren’t sure if you need to file estimated taxes, you can always consult a professional tax preparer or accountant to get a better idea of what your plan should be.

If you expect to owe more than $1,000 in payments for the current tax year, it’s a good idea to make estimated payments to help you avoid penalties down the road.

Taxes Due: What time is the tax deadline in 2024?

In 2024, you will need to file your 2023 annual tax return by Monday, April 15th, 2024.

Latest Articles

The SAVE Plan for Student Loans: How it Works

best rewards credit card

Best Rewards Credit Cards in February 2024

best savings accounts

Best High-Yield Savings Accounts in February 2024

Capital One Platinum Secured Credit Card Review: No Fees, Low Deposit 

Side view portrait of a serious woman comparing documents.

Policygenius Review: Will It Really Save You Time and Money?

Related Articles

How to Do Taxes as a Freelancer

If you’ve recently picked up a side hustle or launched a freelance business, you are probably wondering what to do about your taxes as a

Compare To Other Cards

Best Offers From Our partners

Reward rate

Welcome bonus

Annual fee

Regular APR

Recommended credit

Author picture

I'm an award-winning lawyer and personal finance expert featured in Inc. Magazine, CNBC, the Today Show, Business Insider and more. My mission is to make personal finance accessible for everyone. As the largest financial influencer in the world, I'm connected to a community of over 20 million followers across TikTok, Instagram, YouTube, Facebook and Twitter. I'm also the host of the podcast Erika Taught Me. You might recognize me from my viral tagline, "I read the fine print so you don't have to!"

I'm a graduate of Georgetown Law, where I founded the Georgetown Law Entrepreneurship Club, and the University of Notre Dame. I discovered my passion for personal finance after realizing I was drowning in over $200,000 of student debt and needed to take action-ultimately paying off my student loans in under 2 years. I then spent years as a corporate lawyer representing Fortune 500 companies, but I quit because I realized I wanted to have an impact; I wanted to help real people and teach them that you can create a financial future for yourself.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our aim is to help you make financial decisions with confidence through our objective article content and reviews. Erika.com is part of an affiliate sales network and receives compensation for sending traffic to partner sites, such as MileValue.com. This compensation may impact how and where links appear on this site. This site does not include all financial companies or all available financial offers. This in no way affects our recommendations or article content.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our aim is to help you make financial decisions with confidence through our objective article content and reviews. Erika.com is part of an affiliate sales network and receives compensation for sending traffic to partner sites, such as MileValue.com. This compensation may impact how and where links appear on this site. This site does not include all financial companies or all available financial offers. This in no way affects our recommendations or article content.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our aim is to help you make financial decisions with confidence through our objective article content and reviews. Erika.com is part of an affiliate sales network and receives compensation for sending traffic to partner sites, such as MileValue.com. This compensation may impact how and where links appear on this site. This site does not include all financial companies or all available financial offers. This in no way affects our recommendations or article content.