Taxes aren’t a suggestion. IRS has identified taxpayers who fail to file income tax returns and effectively stop paying income tax as a serious threat to tax administration and the American economy. Failing to file a tax return when you owe taxes can land you in hot water with the IRS, as it is illegal. On top of the threat of legal action, the IRS can and will fine you for your tardiness.
The IRS can file a return for you- called a “substitute for return” or “SFR.” This return will include only your income and not allow you any deductions, credits, or any preferred filing status. The SFR will also include a late filing penalty.
Because the statute of limitations is six years, a taxpayer may not have to file all of their unfiled tax returns. In fact, it may be the worst thing you can do, because you may be creating a greater tax obligation than necessary. Remember, these are the older returns, so if a tax obligation is created, they will bring along a large penalty and interest burden as well.
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