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The annual deadline for filing a tax extension typically falls on April 15th, the same day that income tax returns must be submitted.
This year's due date, however, arrives a bit later: Monday, April 17th. Traditionally, that due date is April 15th, but since the 15th falls on a Sunday this year, you have until April 17, 2012. This gives federal taxpayers an extra weekend to work on their 2011 taxes - or at least complete an income tax extension form to request more time. If you file for a tax extension, the IRS automatically grants you an extra six months to submit your return. That due date is October 15th, 2012.
Special guidelines may apply if you live outside the United States, are considered out of the country when your extension expires, or serve in a combat zone/qualified hazardous duty area. The income tax extension form 4868 outlines these rules in greater detail.
Filing a tax extension provides an additional six months to get your return in, but it does not extend the time you have to pay the IRS. Any tax liability you owe for the year 2011 must be paid by April 17th or you will be subject to penalties and interest.