Tax Return Due Date on the Horizon

Thoughtware Article Published: Sep 01, 2016
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The Surface Transportation and Veterans Health Care Choice Improvement Act of 2015 sets new tax return and form due dates effective for taxable years starting after December 31, 2015. The new law, which generally applies to 2016 calendar year-end tax returns prepared during the 2017 tax filing season, sets due dates based on whether taxation occurs at the business level (C corporations) or the owner level (S corporations and partnerships).

Under the new law, calendar year-end partnership income tax returns will be due March 15 (or 2½ months after year-end). Historically, calendar year-end partnerships had to file by April 15—the same date as individual income tax returns. As a result, the owner of a partnership interest often didn’t obtain the Schedule K-1 to prepare tax returns in a timely manner. The new due date changes address this issue by making calendar year-end, pass-through returns due March 15. As S corps also pass income through to their owners, the new law will retain the March 15 due date.

C corps generally pay tax at the entity level and don’t pass income through to owners. Calendar year-end, C corp income tax returns historically were due March 15; the new law pushes this back to April 15 (or 3½ months after year-end). Note: C corps with a June 30 fiscal year-end will have a September 15 due date with the new law and may request an automatic April 15 extension until tax years beginning after 2015. After 2025, June 30 fiscal year-end C corps will have an October 15 due date and can request extensions until April 15.

Many other tax return types and forms will experience changes to their original and/or extended due dates, including foreign bank reporting forms. FinCEN Form 114, Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR), is now due April 15 with an extended October 15 due date. Here are the new federal due dates generally applicable for 2016 calendar year-end tax returns:

March 15 (File time automatic extension may be requested until September 15)

  • Form 1065, U.S. Return of Partnership Income
  • Form 1120S, U.S. Income Tax Return for an S Corporation

April 15 (File time automatic extension may be requested until October 15)

  • Form 1040, U.S. Individual Income Tax Return
  • Form 1041, U.S. Income Tax Return for Estates and Trusts (Extension until September 30)
  • Form 1120, U.S. Corporation Income Tax Return (Extension until September 15)
  • FBAR

May 15 (File time automatic extension may be requested until November 15)

  • Form 990, Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax

July 31 (File time automatic extension may be requested until October 15)

  • Form 5500, Annual Return/Report of Employee Benefit Plan

State tax return due dates aren’t affected by the new law; however, many states are expected to conform to the new federal due dates. States will need to enact legislation, and/or the state departments of revenue will need to issue guidance to make these changes.

Contact your BKD advisor if you have questions about the new due dates.

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