Need More Time to Do Taxes? Here’s How to File for an Extension

April 17, 2018, 7:13 PM UTC

It’s officially Tax Day! If you’ve already filed your taxes, then you’re good to go. If you’re running a little behind and still haven’t finished your taxes, then you can file an extension that allows you to send them in a little bit later, by Oct. 15.

While you can send in a physical form to file that extension, there are also a number of web services available that can let you file that extension from your desk without braving the post office lines (your extension needs to be postmarked for today in order to count).

Digital extension filing options include TurboTax, TaxSlayer, and Free File Edition. Here’s the full list of supported sites from the IRS. Filing an extension using TurboTax, for instance, takes roughly five minutes and simply involves estimating how much you’ll owe when you do finally get around to finishing your return.

If you do want to brave the lines, you can download form 4868, Application for Automatic Extension of Time To File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return.

Technically, you can also get an extension by paying all or part of what you owe online using Direct Pay on the IRS’ website and selecting “Extension” from the drop-down menu. With the Direct Pay option, you don’t need to fill out a separate form, and you’ll receive a confirmation number for your records, although the service has been down for most of the day.

Also, keep in mind that while you can file late, you can’t pay late without getting hit with a penalty. If you can, try to make a payment close to what you think you’re going to owe when you file that extension form. You’ll thank yourself for doing so later.