Try to Avoid Filing Iowa Returns at the Last Minute

April 3, 2018
Remember that Iowa no longer offers a perfection period for e-filed returns. The return must be accepted by the due date to be considered timely. This can be a problem if the preparer files the return on the last day, and the return is ultimately rejected for failure to comply with formatting and business rules. Rejected submissions are considered "not filed" and the attempted file date will not be used.
Page 9 of the 2018 Iowa Modernized e-File manual contains the following statements
  • The ReturnHeaderState/ReturnTsof the accepted Iowa submission serves as the electronic postmark date provided that it is within 48 hours of the date/time that the IRS received it. Otherwise the date/time that the IRS received it serves as the electronic postmark date. (The manual does not address the situation where the state return is not filed with the federal return).
  • ACH direct debit payments submitted with returns are processed only if returns are accepted. It is recommended that the ACH direct debit payments be transmitted “stand-alone” rather than with the return when an acceptable return cannot be submitted to Iowa by the payment due date.

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