Breath, regroup, return: Some tips on how to make nice with the IRS

Submitted by Katie Ruiz, MadKat Inc., Special to the Signal Tribune

Didn’t file tax returns? Missed the deadline for extension? What now? Don’t panic. MadKat Inc. provides these helpful hints for getting back on track.
1. If you need to file a return to receive a refund only and have no other filing requirements you have three years to file. But remember, the government is using your money until you file for your refund. How generous of you.
2. If you are required to file and you expect to owe, the sooner you file the better–and the sooner you pay the better.
The Internal Revenue Service has a late filing penalty and late paying penalty and they charge interest on top of that.
3. If you filed an extension (or your tax preparer filed an extension on your behalf), you have until Monday, Oct. 15, to file. But remember, if you owe, there is no extension on paying, only on filing a return.
Oh, and California law is similar, except you do not need to file an extension if you do not owe taxes.
4. Forms are available at your friendly local Internal Revenue Service Center (they really are friendly and helpful).
5. Go to for some great information and forms. The site is very user friendly. If you’re waiting for a refund, you can check this site to find out its status.
Also, visit for California information and forms.
For additioanl information or help with filing late returns, contact MadKat Inc. at (562) 283-0558 or visit
The office is located at 2669 Myrtle Avenue, suite 207, in Signal Hill.