Tax day has arrived.
This year, filers had a couple of extra days to get their federal and state income taxes done.
“Right now I have taxes. It is the 17th," said Audrey Carroll of Marlborough. "We had two extra days, yay!”
Tuesday, taxpayers like Carroll have until midnight to file them or face penalties.
Carroll and her husband said they were slamming on Monday night to get their taxes filed. They just returned from Florida.
“We got ‘em done [Monday] night, we signed them," she said. "We put ‘em in the computer.”
Then it was off to the post office to mail them the old fashioned way.
Carroll is one of about 1.8 million Connecticut taxpayers expected to file taxes this season.
Even though the deadline was down to hours, there was still plenty of time to file them or an extension.
“If you don’t have complex taxes," added Kevin Sullivan, Department of Revenue Services commissioner. "Most people don’t. They have somebody file them for them, but they don’t need that.”
Sullivan recommended not having taxes done professionally if the filer's situation is not complicated.
He said taxpayers can go right to the state's website on Tuesday and file their taxes for free to avoid penalties.
There's also the extension option.
Among filers, the DRS said it has seen a 20 percent reduction in paper filings. However, it's hard to say how many people will file by Tuesday's deadline because the department said many people request extensions.
“What people need to realize is in asking and getting approval for an extension to file that does not constitute an extension to pay," Sullivan said.
The extension is possible, but Sullivan said the reason for it better be good.
The state collected $17 billion in state taxes during the most recent fiscal year, $9 billion of which came from personal income taxes.
However, when it comes to filing taxes, things have gone digital. The state recently approved bonding for a new modernized tax system.
Still, postmasters told Channel 3 that they expect busy lines on Tuesday as people rush to mail their paperwork to the state and the Internal Revenue Service by Tuesday night's deadline.
“Once was very heavy out here," said John Wezenski, plant manager, United States Postal Service. "We used to have lines up the street. And we’d have people in the lobby and in the parking lot.”
The USPS urged people not to wait until the end of the day.
“Try to mail as early in the day as possible," Wezenski said. "Always put your return address on your envelope.”
If extra forms are to be filed, be sure to weigh the appropriate postage.
“Tax agencies will not pay postage due so short paid filings must be returned," Wezenski said.
Even with that extra paperwork, there is one other thing to keep in mind when heading to the post office.
“The postal customer who wants to avoid missing the tax deadline [can] mail their return or extension forms early in the day at their local post offices and branches in their community," Wezenski said.
Anyone who comes across questions during their filings should contact the DRS instead of ignoring the problem.
“We’re not trying to trap people into situations where they owe us penalties and interests," Sullivan said. "You’re better off pick up the phone, go online, ask the question.”
For more, head to the DRS's website here.
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