With the Tuesday deadline to file federal and state tax returns approaching, U.S. Postal Serviceofficials advise those who plan to file by mail to check their post-offices' hours because most branches will not have extended hours.
Among post offices in the Baltimore district — those with zip codes beginning with 210 through 219 — only the Baltimore Main Post Office at 900 E. Fayette St. will have extended hours on Tuesday, spokeswoman Yvette Singh said.
That office will be open from 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., with a final collection from the box at that address at midnight, she said.
In Hagerstown, the downtown post office at 44 W. Franklin St. will be open its normal weekday hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and the final collection from the box outside will be at 5 p.m., an employee said.
Extended hours were once common on tax day, but have been mostly eliminated in recent years, Singh said.
“What we’re seeing is that 77 percent of our customers who are taxpayers are e-filing, so they’re no longer coming to the postal service to mail their tax returns,” she said.
A number of tax software companies make their tax preparation and e-filing products available for free for people with income of $57,000 or less, and, regardless of income, everyone can e-file for free using online Fillable Forms, which are electronic versions of the IRS paper forms, according to www.irs.gov.
More information about those options is available at www.irs.gov/efile.
Taxpayers have until Tuesday to file this year because the usual tax deadline of April 15 falls on a Sunday, and Monday is Emancipation Day, a holiday observed in the District of Columbia, according to an IRS news release.
“According to federal law, District of Columbia holidays impact tax deadlines in the same way that federal holidays do; therefore, all taxpayers will have two extra days to file this year,” the release said.
Taxpayers will avoid late-filing penalties if they file either their income-tax return or a request for a tax-filing extension by midnight on Tuesday, according to the IRS.
Tips for mailing tax returns