NEW YORK (AP) — If you're only now starting to work on your company's tax return, maybe you shouldn't try to finish it by April 18, the deadline to file returns this year. You might be better off getting a six-month extension of the deadline.

To borrow from the old saying, "haste makes waste," trying to do a rush job on your taxes is likely to lead to mistakes that will cost you time and money. If you forget to claim all the deductions you're entitled to, you'll pay more than you should to the government. And if the IRS finds an error that's in the government favor, you could owe interest on tax you didn't pay. If you have to go back and amend your return, there's more time out the window.

Accountants and tax attorneys advise small business owners at this point in filing season to get an extension. If you showed up at a tax preparer's office now hoping to get your return done, chances are they'd say no — and get an extension for you. THERE'S NOTHING TO FEAR FROM EXTENSIONS There is no shame or harm in getting an extension. Millions of taxpayers get them, and some business owners do it as a matter of course. Members of a partnership often can't make the filing deadline because they can't complete their personal returns until the business return is done. (By the way, the deadline is April 18 this year because the 15th is a holiday in the nation's capital.)

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