April 15th tax deadline is rapidly approaching, you’re out of the country and need additional time in order to file. What should you do?
American citizens living overseas who fear they will not be able to file their taxes on time should complete and submit IRS Form 2350. Form 2350, which is entitled “Application for Extension of Time To File U.S. Income Tax Return For U.S. Citizens and Resident Aliens Abroad Who Expect To Qualify for Special Tax Treatment” is the IRS form for overseas citizens to request an extension for filing their tax forms.
Before completing tax filing extension form, however, individuals should double check to make sure they meet the filing qualifications. The individual must be a US citizen or resident alien, expect to qualify for the foreign income exclusion and/or foreign residence deduction and must be residing out of the country during the tax year in question. Upon meeting these three conditions, the applicant can use Form 2350.
Here’s how to use Form 2350 for a tax filing extension:
- Obtain a copy of Form 2350: Visit the Internal Revenue Service’s website to obtain a copy of Form 2350. The form is available in PDF format and requires Adobe Acrobat Reader. If access to the Internet is a problem, call the Internal Revenue Service and request a copy.
- Complete Form 2350: In addition to the usual information such as name address and Social Security number, individuals must be prepared to provide an explanation as to how much additional time is needed to file the appropriate tax forms. Additionally, the applicant will have to provide the dates out of the country, expected date of return to the United States and provide a foreign home address.
- Include Payment: Completing and the tax filing extension application with the Internal Revenue Service does not excuse the tax payer from paying taxes by the April 15th due date. Form 2350 provides additional time for the applicant, if approved, to submit the corresponding papers that usually accompany tax returns. Individuals who do not send payment by the tax due date will be charged a late payment penalty and will accrue interest charges until the taxes are paid.
The mere fact of filing this application does not grant a tax filing extension. The internal revenue has several options upon receipt of the application. They can either 1) approve the application, 2) not approve the application but grant a 45-day extension of time in which to file the appropriate tax forms, 3) not approve the application and not grant the 45-day extension, 4) not consider the application because it was filed beyond the April 15th due date.
There is no way of getting around it. American citizens are aware that April 15 is the tax deadline date in the United States. Living overseas is not an excuse for not filing taxes or paying the appropriate amount due. To avoid late penalties, interest charges and stress, it’s best to plan ahead to in order to file taxes on time.