Don’t panic! You can request a six-month extension. There are many reasons that taxpayers may decide to file for an extension. The IRS recognizes that taxpayers may not have necessary documents. Contrary to what many people believe, requesting an extension does not put some sort of flag on your return. It does not increase the likelihood that you will be audited. If you cannot prepare your tax return and file it by the due date, request an extension.
Keep in mind that the extension gives you more time to file. It does not extend your deadline to pay. If you owe taxes, you should go on and pay them.
Filing an extension is easy. You can follow the instructions on the IRS web page, or if you have already spent the money on tax software, there should be a menu option that will let you prepare an extension and submit it by mail or e-file. If you are already working with a tax professional, then he or she has probably already advised you if you will need to request an extension.