The IRS recently announced that the federal income tax filing due date for individuals for the 2020 tax year will be automatically extended from April 15th 2021, to May 17th 2021. Individual taxpayers may also postpone federal income tax payments for the 2020 tax year due on April 15th 2021 to May 17th 2021, without penalties and interest regardless of the amount owed.

This postponement applies to individual taxpayers, including individuals who pay self-employment tax. 

Penalties, interest, and additions to tax will begin to accrue on any remaining unpaid balances as of May 17th 2021.  Additional time for filing beyond May 17th, 2021 can be requested by filing an extension until October 15th, 2021 on Form 4868.  Note that this relief does not apply to estimated tax payments that are due on April 15th, 2021.


In the recently released IRS Notice 2021-21, the IRS has confirmed that the due date for filing federal income tax returns in the Form 1040 series (Form 1040, Form 1040-SR, Form 1040-NR, Form 1040-PR, Form 1040-SS, or Form 1040(SP)) and for making federal income tax payments in connection with these forms having an original due date of April 15, 2021 is automatically postponed to May 17, 2021. No extension request needs to be filed, and the period beginning on April 15, 2021 and ending on May 17, 2021 will be disregarded in the calculation of any interest, penalty, or addition to tax for failure to file a federal income tax return or to pay the associated tax by the original due date.


The postponement of the due date for filing the above also automatically postpones to the same date the time for taxpayers to make 2020 contributions to their individual retirement arrangements (IRAs and Roth IRAs), health savings accounts, Archer Medical Savings Accounts, and Coverdell education savings accounts. This postponement also automatically extends to May 17, 2021 the time for reporting and payment of the ten percent additional tax on amounts includible in gross income from 2020 distributions from IRAs or workplace-based retirement plans. 


Critically, the above relief is available solely with respect to the Form 1040 series returns having an original due date of April 15, 2021 and in respect of an individual taxpayer’s 2020 taxable year. Businesses and any other type of taxpayer who file federal income tax returns on forms outside of the Form 1040 series are not covered by the relief described in Notice 2021-21. Moreover, no extension is provided for the payment or deposit of any other type of federal tax, including federal estimated income tax payments.