By Keith Kightlinger
The Internal Revenue Service recently announced that it has extended the filing deadline for farmers and fishermen who did not make estimated tax payments for the 2012 tax year from March 1, 2013 until April 15, 2013.
Farmers and fishermen who received at least two-thirds of their total gross income from farming or fishing in either 2012 or 2011 are not required to make estimated tax payments. Farmers and fishermen who elect not to make estimated tax payments are normally required to file their income tax return and pay all the tax due by March 1.
This year because Congress passed the American Taxpayer Relief Act late in December and it wasn't signed and enacted until Jan. 2, 2013, the deadline has been moved to April 15 for 2012 tax returns only.
Qualifying farmers and fishermen who have traditionally not made estimated tax payments and filed their returns and paid their taxes in full on or before March 1 will have extra time to file this year.
Despite the extended deadline, many of these taxpayers may still want to have their income tax returns prepared as early as possible. Even if they don't submit their returns until April 15, they will want to have their tax return information available, if needed, when working with lenders to secure lines of credit to pay production expenses during the 2013 growing season.
Some 2012 tax forms must be changed to be compliant with the act. Because of this, the IRS previously announced that it would not open the tax return filing season until January 30, 2013, due to the changes in tax forms and tax return processing made necessary by the passage of the American Taxpayer Relief Act.
Eligible farmers and fishermen requesting a waiver of the underpayment of estimated tax penalty for their 2012 income tax returns must attach Form 2210-F (Underpayment of Estimated Tax by Farmers and Fishermen) with their 2012 income tax return.
No extension has been made as of this date to the April 15, 2013 income tax return filing and tax payment deadline.
Taxpayers seeking additional information on this and other tax topics can visit the IRS website: www.irs.gov , and click on the "News" tab.
Kightlinger is farm tax specialist with the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension.