What you need to know about the extended 2020 tax deadline and how your stimulus check affects your taxes

RALEIGH (WTVD) -- With the traditional tax deadline now extended for three months, taxpayers have some questions about what that will mean for them.

One of the most commonly asked questions is whether those who underpaid their taxes in 2019 will be charged penalties and interest between the old deadline and the new deadline of July 15.

"Luckily with the IRS penalties and interest will not be charged until after July 15," said CPA Faith Bynum.

But taxpayers aren't so lucky with the North Carolina Department of Revenue.

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"The state law does not or will not, unless the law is changed, abate any interest. So that is something that taxpayers do need to be aware of especially if you anticipate owing any taxes for the year 2019," Bynum said.

There have been some rumblings that the state legislature might consider retroactively delaying interest until July 15.

But the only way to ensure you won't pay interest is to pay any taxes you owe for 2019 now.

A stimulus payment, if you qualify, could help offset that burden.

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If you get a stimulus payment, will you have to pay taxes on it when you file next year?
"The stimulus check will not be included in your 2020 taxable income," Bynum said.

She also shot down rumors that the stimulus is an advance on any refund you may be eligible for.

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It is not, she said.

And she noted that many people who made too much money in 2019 to qualify for a stimulus payment may make less than the threshold this year because of the impact of COVID-19 on businesses.

In that case and for any other reason you made less than the stimulus threshold in 2020, you may be able to get a credit on your 2020 taxes in the amount of the stimulus payment for which you would have qualified at the level of the income you receive this year.
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