Tax Filing Day is Extended to May 17
Published on April 8, 2021
Taxpayers get an extra month to pull together their reports and receipts for their accountants, now that the Internal Revenue Service has issued a tax return deadline extension until May 17. The reason given was pandemic related, as many Americans are dealing with economic upheaval. You may recall that last year, the deadline was pushed to July 15 as the country underwent extraordinary circumstances, high unemployment, and general distress related to COVID-19.
The May 17 target date allows those who’ve been out of work, had hours cut, or are just getting back into the workforce time to figure out their finances and review tax changes that went into effect with the American Rescue Plan. For example, unemployment benefits up to $10,200 received in 2020 are tax free for individuals with incomes below $150,000. A few things to note:
- The extension is for 2020 federal tax returns only, not state returns. Check with your state agency to find out if their deadline has changed.
- Taxpayers who pay quarterly estimated taxes still must pay the next installment by April 15.
- If you’ve already filed your 2020 federal return and are eligible for the recently passed tax break, do not file an amended return until the IRS issues additional guidance on that matter.
- Filing timely may help those whose 2020 income creates eligibility for a stimulus payment or a larger one than anticipated. Your tax professional can explain more in detail about how you may qualify and how the filing extension may affect you.
At Next Generation, here’s a caveat we like about this filing extension: it gives taxpayers more time to contribute to their retirement accounts and reduce 2020 income (since the prior year contribution deadline was also extended to May 17) using stimulus money or compensation from their restarted or new job. Contributing to your retirement plan has the potential to qualify an individual for stimulus funds by reducing income on the tax return (for tax year 2020). And of course, if you have a self-directed IRA or other self-directed retirement plan, health savings account (HSA), or education savings account (ESA), you can also leverage the power of alternative assets to build a more diverse portfolio and a hedge against stock market volatility.
Weather-related extensions for affected taxpayers
In Louisiana and Texas, people affected by the bitter February storms and cold snap now have until June 15 to complete activities related to retirement plans (IRAs and employer-sponsored plans), HSAs and ESAs. These time-sensitive activities, which typically must occur by the tax filing deadline, include:
- Making contributions for the 2020 tax year to a Traditional, Roth, Simple or SEP IRA, HSA, and Coverdell ESA
- Completing various types of rollovers
- Extending the time frame for using IRA distributions for first-time home purchases without penalty
- Filing Forms 5498, 5498-A, 5498-SA, 990-T, and 550 with the IRS
- Making corrective distributions of excess deferrals, contributions and aggregate contributions to qualified retirement plans
If you are in the affected areas, you can read more here.
It’s always a good time to invest in alternative assets
All those retirement plans and other accounts noted above can be self-directed—including HSAs and ESAs.
Savvy investors who self-direct their retirement plans (as well as other plans) enjoy the benefits of portfolio diversification. They can also take advantage of investment opportunities as they arise or invest in assets that align with their values or goals. Examples of alternative assets allowed in self-directed IRAs are real estate, precious metals, notes/loans, private equity, cryptocurrency, impact investments and more. We recently presented webinars on how to invest in music royalties and impact investments, so you can see the field is quite open for including nontraditional investments you already know and understand—any time of year.
Here’s another tip: you can schedule a complimentary educational sessions with someone from the Next Generation team; or contact us directly via phone at 888.857.8058 or email NewAccounts@NextGenerationTrust.com to get answers to your questions about self-direction as a retirement wealth-building strategy.Back to Blog