The Oct. 15 deadline to file a 2007 income tax return and to receive an economic stimulus payment this year is fast approaching.
This is the deadline for the estimated 4.3 million retirees and disabled veterans who may be eligible to receive a stimulus payment but who normally don’t file a tax return.
It’s also the deadline for the approximately 10 million people who earlier this year received extensions to file their 2007 income tax return.
The IRS has yet to hear from an estimated 4.2 million people who receive certain Social Security benefits and 178,000 who receive certain Veterans Affairs benefits. The agency twice has sent to this group letters that enclosed a Form 1040A, a sample tax form and instructions for sending the tax return to the IRS. If these instructions have been misplaced, the fastest way to obtain a Package 1040A-3 is to go to IRS.gov or to local IRS offices. There are more than 400 local offices nationwide where people can get assistance in preparing the return as well. A return also can be prepared and submitted for free through Free File which is available at IRS.gov.
Also, each year, there are approximately 10 million taxpayers who request an extension from the April 15 deadline to file their tax return. The extension applies only to filing a return, not to paying any taxes owed. Oct. 15 is a final deadline for these extension taxpayers to avoid any penalties. They, too, may be eligible for the economic stimulus payment but must file a 2007 return by Oct. 15 to receive the payment this year.
By law, the IRS cannot disperse any economic stimulus payments after Dec. 31. However, people who may be eligible for an economic stimulus payment can claim a credit in 2009 by filing a 2008 income tax return.
Those who already have filed a 2007 tax return but who have not yet received an economic stimulus payment, can check on the status of your payment by going to “Where’s My Economic Stimulus Payment?” on the IRS.gov Web site.