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2011 filing extension until December 15, 2012? Here’s how

For those of you who are Americans living abroad and sweating the October 15 tax filing deadline, may be able to qualify for a further extension of time for filing your tax return — to December 15.

The IRS webpage which describes the extension request procedure is part of IRS Publication 54.

Here is a far better explanation than the IRS will ever give you. You will end up with precise, useful information on what to do, and you will in fact get plenty of useless information along the way.

If you are an American living abroad, and you want to get a filing deadline of December 15, 2012 for your 2011 Form 1040, do this:

  1. On or before June 15, 2012, file Form 4868.
  2. On or before June 15, 2012, pay whatever tax you have to pay for 2011, along with that Form 4868 you are filing.
  3. On or before October 15, 2012, write a letter and mail it to the IRS using the procedures I describe below.
  4. File your 2011 Form 1040 on or before December 15, 2012 with all of the magic language ‘n stuff attached to it that I describe below.

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