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File by June 14 to avoid increased late-filing penalty

Taxpayers who owe tax and file their federal income tax return more than 60 days after the deadline will usually face a higher late-filing penalty. The IRS recommended taxpayers file by June 14 to avoid the penalty increase. (IR-2018-133)

If a tax return is filed more than 60 days after the April due date — or more than 60 days after the October due date if an extension was obtained — the minimum penalty is either $210 or 100 percent of the unpaid tax, whichever is less.

California’s late-filing penalty is like the federal late-filing penalty in that the maximum total penalty is 5% of the unpaid tax per month, or part of the month, that the return is late, up to a maximum of 25% of the unpaid tax. (R&TC §19131) For California purposes, if the return is not filed within 60 days after the extended due date, the late-filing penalty is the greater of:

  • The 25% maximum penalty; or
  • The lesser of:
    • The unpaid tax; or
    • $135.

(R&TC §19131(b))