What Is Form 4868: Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return?

Form 4868: Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return is an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) form for individuals who wish to extend the amount of time they have to file their tax returns. Any extension granted by the IRS applies only to paperwork.

Filing Form 4868 does not alleviate the taxpayer of tax liability. All payments must be made by April 15 or interest will incur.

Who Can File Form 4868: Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return?

A U.S. citizen or resident who wants an automatic extension to file a U.S. individual income tax return should file this form. Taxpayers in the country receive a maximum six-month extension. U.S. citizens or residents who are out of the country on the due date are allowed two extra months without Form 4868 to file their returns and pay any amount due without requesting an extension. Filing this form will grant an additional four months to the taxpayer out of the country. The IRS qualifies those out out the country as:

  • Anyone who lives outside the U.S. and Puerto Rico and your main place of work is outside the U.S. and Puerto Rico
  • Anyone in military or naval service on duty outside the U.S. and Puerto Rico

How to File Form 4868: Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return

This short form should be completed with the individual or married couple's names, address, Social Security numbers, estimate of total tax liability for the year, total payments already made, remaining amount due, and amount being paid, if any.

The form should be filed by April 15.

Download Form 4868: Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return

Click this link to download a copy of Form 4868: Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return.

Key Takeaways

  • Form 4868 is used by U.S. citizens and resident who wish to apply for an extension to file a tax return.
  • Taxpayers in the country receive a maximum six-month extension, while those out of the country receive a four-month extension in addition to the two months they already receive.
  • Filing Form 4868 does not alleviate the taxpayer of tax liability. Payments are still due on April 15, and late payments will incur interest.