IRS News Releases  
Oct. 5, 2005

Oct. 17 Tax Deadline Approaches
For Extension Filers

WASHINGTON - Although most taxpayers have long since filed their 2004 federal income tax returns, the Internal Revenue Service said today that approximately 2 million people still face the Oct. 17 filing deadline.

The IRS reminded taxpayers who received an additional extension in August that they should file their returns by Oct. 17 to avoid the late filing penalty, which is generally 5 percent per month of any unpaid tax.

However, there are many taxpayers in Presidentially declared disaster areas as a result of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita who have been granted additional time until Feb. 28, 2006, to file their tax returns. Taxpayers in these areas with questions can call the IRS disaster hot line at 866-562-5227. Also, Wyoming taxpayers in Campbell County, where a tornado occurred in August, have until Oct. 21 to file their returns.

Usually the extension deadline is Oct. 15, however, this year that date falls on a Saturday so extension filers have until Oct. 17 to file their returns. Last year, the IRS received more than 2.1 million returns in October.

Taxpayers may file returns electronically until Oct. 17; some may be able to file for free through the Free File program at Taxpayers may use tax software on their own computers or e-file through an authorized provider. These options offer taxpayers security and accuracy in filing their returns, as well as faster refunds. So far this year, approximately 68 million taxpayers have filed electronically, representing more than half of all individual tax returns.

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