Owe the IRS? You might be able to get 120 extra days to pay your tax bill
Estimated tax payment #1 for 2011
also is due today, April 18

Ultimate tax procrastinators
By the Numbers: 7% file extensions

If you're working on your tax return today, the eve of this year's April 18 filing deadline, you are not alone. The IRS says between 20 percent and 25 percent of taxpayers put off their tax tasks until the last two weeks of the filing season.

But these folks are mere amateurs.

The hardcore tax filing procrastinators don't mess with their tax returns until after the annual April due date. And those folks are this week's By the Numbers figure: 7 percent.

7 percent seek filing extensions The IRS says that's the usual percentage of taxpayers who each year seek a six-month extension to file.

Given that the IRS expects 141 million returns this year, that translates into 9.87 million taxpayers likely to seek until as late as Oct. 17 to finish up their tax paperwork.

A few quick notes about filing extensions.

You can submit Form 4868 electronically or by mail. Whichever method you choose, do so by tomorrow.

Not to be a nag, but pay what you owe or as much as possible. Yes, you might be able to get a reprieve on paying due taxes tomorrow, but in most cases, the IRS expects any money you owe by the filing deadline.To that end, the agency offers several payment options.

If you do get a six-month extension, you don't have to wait until October to finish your return. As soon as you can complete your 1040 and associated forms, the IRS will be happy to take it.

Free File will stay open for business through Oct. 17 to accommodate the ultimate tax filing procrastinators.

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