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Tax Deadline – April 18th This Year

Taxes and payments will be due this year on April 18th, 2022!  This is the case as the D.C. IRS office is closed on Friday, April 15th in observance of the locally recognized holiday Emancipation Day.  This holiday is in celebration of when President Abraham Lincoln signed to Compensated Emancipation Act which abolished slavery!  The holiday is typically observed on the 16th of April, but since the 16th is a Saturday, most will have the day off on Friday, April 15th.

Deadline History

This little bit of extra time is something that happens very seldom as emancipation day does not always fall on a Friday or Saturday.  A moving deadline, however, may be something we’ve seen a little bit more frequently lately with all of the movement surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.  In honor of the many unordinary deadlines we’ve seen recently, we’d like to recap a bit of the history of the tax deadline:

Way Back When:

April has not always been the tax day deadline! Believe it or not, March 1st was originally the deadline set for filing individual returns.  Although not fully confirmed, the typical explanation that can be heard surrounding the deadline is that the timing of the passage of the 16th Amendment made March 1st stick.  When the 16th Amendment was passed (which allows Congress to institute an income tax) it was February 3rd, 1913 making the most convenient next date March 1st.

Although the 16th Amendment was passed, an income tax was not actually imposed at first.  It wasn’t until October 3, 1913, that Congress passed the Revenue Act of 1913.  According to this act, anyone with an income level greater than the exemptions ($3,000 for single filers and $4,000 for married couples) was required to file a tax return, “on or before the first day of March, nineteen hundred and fourteen.”  Following this, Congress soon rethought the timing, setting March 15th as the new tax deadline following the passage of the Revenue Act of 1918.

The Revenue Act of 1918 was actually passed in February 1919, which only granted taxpayers a few weeks to file their returns.  For this reason, there was a large push by taxpayers for an outright extension for the deadline.  While this request was not granted, it set up procedures for filing an estimate of making a provisional payment (which is very similar to how we file extensions today)!

Not So Long Ago:

March 15th remained the filing deadline for a very long time following this, in fact, it wasn’t until 1955 that the date was changed.  The Internal Revenue Code of 1954 established April 15th as the tax day we all now know and LOVE.  According to lawmakers, the date was changed for the sole benefit of the taxpayers, as tax laws became increasingly complex and Americans needed more time for their due diligence.

Wrap Up

As tax laws have become even more complex, issues have been encountered by almost all Americans when trying to file their return.  If you find yourself in this situation, give us a call and see how we can help you out…

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