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06-13-2017 09:41 PM
Back in April, I made more than one attempt to e-file my return through H&R online, and it was rejected apparently because of a missing value that in my case couldn't be corrected. So i paper filed, and wrote on my 1040 "TIMELY FILED REJECTED ELECTRONIC RETURN", as advised by an associate on this forum.
Well, apparently that wasn't enough, because I got a bill today for late filing penalty and interest. At the time I expressed concern that they might want a copy of a rejection notice/detailed e-file status report, or some kind of submission ID, but was assured I didn't need such evidence. So wondering what I can do. If I call/write them again and explicitly request they look into the rejection, what are the odds of getting results? Ditto if I contact H&R and try to get evidence of my rejected timely return. Thanks!
06-13-2017 10:55 PM
Welcome to the H&R Block community.
There's not going to be anything you can do about the interest & penalties unfortunately, and I'm sorry that you were given the incorrect advice that you were given.
An extension or any other remedy for late filing is only valid for the filing of your tax return, not for payment of the tax. You must still pay your tax due, and the IRS must have received the payment, by the filing deadline. Otherwise it is subject to interest and penalties.
H&R Block typically will not cover interest & penalties, however if you purchased "Peace of Mind" coverage that would cover any extra tax in the event that an error on Block's part led to you owing the additional tax and it would provide you with assistance in dealing with the IRS.
That said, I would like to make sure you know what to do in the future. The advice that you should have been given is that if you owe tax and you determine within the last week of the tax season that you can't get your return filed by April 15th then you should immediately e-file an application for an automatic six-month extension (Form 4868) and pay your tax due with a debit or credit card through IRS Direct Pay so that they receive it by the 15th. The amount due or expected to be due is reported on Form 4868 so that's how they match it up.
If you determine by the beginning of April that you cannot file your return in time then you can mail or e-file the 4868. If you mail Form 4868 I would mail it by either April 1st or the next business day after that as it must be received by the IRS by April 15th.
Your best bet on this one is going to be to give the IRS a call at either 1-800-829-1040 or at the phone number in your letter and ask if there's anything you can provide them in order to get the penalty waived. Many times you can send them additional information, and as you mentioned it's possible that a report of the rejection would work. Again, you'll need to call and ask them if you can do anything to avoid the penalty and if so then you need to know what they need.
If you have any other questions I'll be glad to help.
Senior Tax Advisor (Tampa, FL)
06-14-2017 01:04 PM - edited 06-14-2017 01:13 PM
Thanks for the reply, Louis. I actually read from a few different sources that if an efile is rejected on the due date (the last attempt was) they allow extra time to file and be considered timely. If that's still the case, it does seem like at least the late filling penalty shouldn't apply. I will try contacting them, but do you know of any way I could get a rejection report from HRB to include with anything I send them? You'd think in this electronic age, they could look up the SSN and see that it was rejected for technical reasons, but I guess I shouldn't "bank" on that.