(CBS News) — Americans will have an additional three months to file their taxes, with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announcing Friday that Tax Day has been shifted to July 15 from the usual April 15.
The deadline delay comes as millions of people are self-isolating and millions more cope with “shelter-in-place” orders due to the coronavirus pandemic.
It’s the second tax delay that the federal government has announced because of the outbreak, with the Treasury Department earlier giving taxpayers an additional three months to pay the IRS in case they owed taxes. In a tweet, Mnuchin said the decision was ordered by President Donald Trump.
“At @realDonaldTrump’s direction, we are moving Tax Day from April 15 to July 15. All taxpayers and businesses will have this additional time to file and make payments without interest or penalties,” Mnuchin wrote.
The decision comes amid growing concern from lawmakers and consumers about meeting the April 15 tax deadline. On March 10, members of the House Ways and Means Committee asked the IRS in a letter to consider extending the filing deadline because “we are concerned about the ability of the IRS to provide taxpayer assistance and process returns, as well as the ability of taxpayers, free tax-preparation sites and tax professionals to meet the filing deadline.”
It’s not the first time the tax filing deadline has been extended. It last occurred two years ago when the IRS’s payments website suffered multiple outages hours before the deadline. The legislators noted in their letter Tuesday that the IRS already has authority to extend filing deadlines by up to six months, as well as to waive penalties.