WASHINGTON - Taxes are due Tuesday. Procrastinators can rejoice because if you don't time to file and the government owes you a refund, you won't be penalized for filing late.
It's always a race to file on time. While it is safest to file by the deadline, there is some wiggle room for certain people.
So, if you are absolutely positive that you will be owed a refund, you won't get in trouble with the IRS if you miss Tuesday's filing deadline.
CNN Money says this has always been the case, but few people know about it. The IRS is, of course, more eager to collect money than to find the people it owes money to.
However, waiting past deadline may be a gamble. If it turns out that you do actually owe money, you will be faced with fines for both failing to file on time and failing to pay on time.
And one of those penalties will continue to grow, five percent for each month after the deadline that you are late.
Now, if you are owed a refund that you've never collected after three years, it's no longer yours and the IRS can reclaim your refund.
And apparently we're leaving some real money on the table. The IRS said that Americans left a total of $760 million in unclaimed tax refunds in 2011. That means that after tomorrow those refunds can no longer be claimed.
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