(RNN) – Most Americans have until Monday, April 18, 2016, to file their taxes instead of the traditional April 15 date, which falls on a Friday this year.
The IRS says that nine out of 10 taxpayers who use e-file and direct deposit for refunds – the safest and fastest way to file accurate income tax returns and to receive refunds – should receive their money in less than 21 days.
The IRS extended the date because this year, Washington, DC, will celebrate Emancipation Day, a legal district holiday observed in remembrance of Abraham Lincoln signing an April 16, 1862, act that paid slave owners to free slaves in the capital.
The deadline will be Tuesday, April 19 in Maine and Massachusetts because of Patriots Day, a state holiday commemorating the anniversary of the first battles of the Revolutionary War.
This tax season began with the IRS accepting individual electronic returns on Jan. 19, 2016. The IRS expects that more than four of five of the 150 million individual returns it receives in 2016 will be prepared using tax-preparation software.
Americans are required to pay federal taxes because of the Sixteenth Amendment, approved in 1913, which allows Congress to impose an income tax. Since 1913, some people have contended the amendment was never intended to apply to the income of ordinary wage earners but only to the unearned income of the top 1 percent of wage earners.
Lawmakers enacted the federal income tax in 1862 to support the Union’s War effort, eliminated the tax in 1872 and revived it in 1894. The U.S. Supreme Court declared the tax unconstitutional in 1895.