Understanding the Forthcoming Tax Return Deadline

As the curtain closes on this year’s tax season, a vital deadline looms large on the horizon for taxpayers, emphasizing the need for swift action.

Mark Steber, Chief Tax Information Officer for Jackson Hewitt Tax Services, underscores the urgency: “If you’re entitled to a refund, time is of the essence to claim it from the IRS. The window to apply for and collect 2020 tax refunds closes on May 17.”

Steber highlights a crucial three-year window for taxpayers to file returns and claim refunds. For those who haven’t yet filed for the 2020 tax year, May 17 is the last call to seize potential refunds. Shockingly, there’s a staggering amount of unclaimed funds waiting in the IRS coffers.

“We’re looking at one million individuals who haven’t seized $1 billion in ‘waiting for you’ tax refunds from 2020,” reveals Steber.

According to IRS estimates, approximately 31,400 Ohioans haven’t filed returns to receive nearly $32,939,900, with each potentially entitled to a $909 refund.

Steber’s experience of four decades in the tax season trenches sadly reveals a recurring pattern: many individuals fail to realize or believe they qualify for a refund.

“A common misconception is circulating, often propagated through platforms like TikTok, that you don’t need to file if you earn under a certain threshold,” explains Steber. “But the reality is, while filing may not be mandatory, it’s the only way to reclaim these funds, as they won’t magically find their way to you.”

For those feeling lost amid the tax labyrinth, Steber advocates seeking assistance from licensed tax professionals.

“They can serve as invaluable guides, minimizing tax liability, maximizing refunds, and uncovering potential windfalls you didn’t even know were yours. There are a million of you out there,” Steber urges.

Furthermore, Steber stresses the broader ramifications of missing the 2020 tax return deadline. Beyond forfeiting refunds, many low- and moderate-income earners could miss out on the Earned Income Tax Credit. Particularly pertinent during the pandemic-riddled 2020, this credit could amount to as much as $6,600 for eligible taxpayers with qualifying dependents.

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