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How to File an Extension on Your Business Income Taxes

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How to File an Extension for Business Taxes Step 1: Rules and Deadlines
How to File an Extension on Your Business Income Taxes
Jean Murray

First step to filing an extension

Before you file an application for an extension on your business taxes, take a minute to review the rules and the deadlines:

  • For every type of business tax return, the extension application must be filed no later than the date the tax return is due.
  • Then, the deadline for filing the extended tax return varies by type of business. For partnerships, the extension is for six months, until September 15. For corporations, the extension is for six months, until October 15. For sole proprietorships and single-member LLCs, the extension is for six months, until October 15.
  • In addition, at least 90% of any taxes that are due for the year in question must be paid by the tax return due date. Any payments after the due date may incur fines and penalties.
  • The type of tax return you are filing for your business dictates the deadline and the length of the extension. In general, you must file the extension application before the business tax return is due.
    • Partnerships and multiple-member LLCs must file their partnership returns by April 15. Partnerships have five months to complete and file the extension, so the extension due date is September 15.
    • Corporations and S Corporations must file their corporate tax returns six months after the end of their fiscal year (financial year), so a corporation or s corporation with a December 31 year end must file corporate taxes by March 15. The six-month extension is due September 15 for a December 31 year end corporation. For corporations, count six months after the end of the fiscal year for the tax return deadline, then six additional months to complete and file the extended tax return.
    • A sole proprietorship or single-member LLC (filing as a sole proprietorship) extension is for six months, so they must submit their extension by October 15.

Read more details about the deadlines for filing an extension and for filing your business tax return at the end of the extension.

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