The IRS due date for filing 2021 tax returns has passed, but taxpayers who missed the deadline still have many reasons to file as soon as possible. Both those who owe tax and those entitled to refunds will benefit from filing a 2021 return without further delay.
If you owe tax and did not request an automatic filing extension, filing your return now will minimize the late filing penalty. Even if you did request an extension, remember that the extension applies only to filing your return, not to paying your tax. By estimating how much tax you owe and paying now, you can reduce other IRS penalties and interest charges.
Some federal tax credits are also refundable, meaning that if you qualify, you may receive an IRS refund even if you owed no tax or had no tax withheld during the year. However, you generally must file a return to claim these credits and receive your refund. Common refundable credits include the Child Tax Credit (CTC), Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), Recovery Rebate Credit, and Child and Dependent Care Credit.