2020 estimated tax payments deadline
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Level 2

2020 estimated tax payments deadline

Hello, what is the deadline for making estimated payments for 2020, either by check/mail or online in the IRS website?  I have taxes withheld from salaries and pension during the year, and now I realize the taxes withheld may not be enough to cover the actual taxes owed (due to dividends and capital gain from my wife's new investment and retirement accounts; we file MFJ), and want to make additional payments to cover the differences so as not to incur any interests and penalties.


My 2020 taxes withheld for both federal and state are a little more than the actual taxes for 2019.  The federal and state instructions appear to say that there would not be interest and penalty if the amounts that I have withheld are more than the actual taxes in the previous year (2019).  But I expect that we would owe several thousand dollars more than I have withheld this year because my wife inherited her mother's investment accounts, and there are dividends and substantial capital gains (brokerage firm sells stocks and buys new ones regularly during the year, therefore incurring capital gains even if my wife does not receive the funds since they are re-invested in buying new stocks and funds).  I assume that there won't be interest an penalty since the taxes withheld so far are more than actual taxes owed and paid in 2019.  But I don't want to take any chances.


Thank you.

3 Replies
Level 15

2020 estimated tax payments deadline

When are federal estimated taxes for individual returns due?

SOLVEDby TurboTax703Updated 4 days ago

The deadlines for tax year 2021 quarterly payments are:

  1. April 15, 2021
  2. June 15, 2021
  3. September 15, 2021
  4. January 15, 2022

For tax year 2020, the dates were:

  1. July 15, 2020 (formerly April 15)
  2. July 15, 2020 (formerly June 15)
  3. September 15, 2020
  4. January 15, 2021

We automatically calculate quarterly estimated tax payments and prepare vouchers (Form 1040-ES) for you to print. Mail your payment along with the corresponding 1040-ES voucher to the IRS address listed on the voucher.

The postmark date is used to determine if the estimated tax payment is paid on time. Additional payment options are available at the IRS Payment website 

**Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to offer the most correct information possible. The poster disclaims any legal responsibility for the accuracy of the information that is contained in this post.**
Level 15

2020 estimated tax payments deadline

one item you mentioned.... the brokerage firm selling stocks that your wife inherited..... for any stocks purchased prior to the date of death, the cost basis "steps up" to the price on the date of death.  Also, they are all considered long term gains / losses even if they had been held for less than a year.  So you are only paying capital gains tax measured on gains from the date of death forward.....


further, if you think there is a potential for interest for late payment, suggest making the estimated payment now and not wait until January 15th.  The IRS measures this quarterly and if there are interest charges for late payment from the Sept 15, 2020 payment that should have been made, you can cut off that interest clock by paying today. 

Level 2

2020 estimated tax payments deadline

Thank you all for your replies

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