TODAY   |  April 13, 2013

What should you do if you haven’t filed yet?

Trying to get taxes filed this weekend? The most efficient way is to e-file, which is safe, secure and offers direct deposits for refunds. And while extensions are granted, that doesn’t mean you don’t have to pay right away. Alexa Von Toble, CEO of learnvest.com is interviewed by TODAY’s Lester Holt.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> about a third of americans have waited until the last minute to prepare their income taxes . the deadline is monday so what should you do if you haven't filed yet? we have founder and ceo of learnbest.com. good to have you. let's set the bar for everyone. the 15th is the deadline. you have to take action no matter what your tax situation.

>> that's actually not -- the date is not going to move. you have to file your taxes any way you cut it. it's monday.

>> give advice for people who are going to try to get it done this weekend. what should you keep in mind?

>> lots of people are scrambling this weekend. two things to do. the most efficient is to e-file. you can do it online. it's seamless. safe and secure and ultimately you can get a direct deposit refund if you get one. you can do that. your accountant can do that or if you are using a tax software , they can help you do that.

>> are there situations in which you cannot e-file that you have to use old fashioned paper?

>> there are situations. if you and someone else are claiming the same dependent, you'll have to paper file and in that situation printout forms, sign it and you need to send it by certified mail by or before monday. you have to get that post mark on there. certified mail by monday.

>> if you think you can't get it done on time, talk to me about extensions.

>> about 7% of the country files for an extension. if you don't have your paperwork and you can't file, you need an extension. the big takeaway there is you get six months to get that paperwork but the key is you still have to pay your estimated taxes. just because you file an extension doesn't mean you are off the hook for sending in a check to the government by monday.

>> i hear that every day about estimated taxes. if i haven't done the paperwork, how do i know what the estimated tax is?

>> go off your 1040 . if you have trouble paying taxes, what you need to do is you have to file. the key is if you know and have paperwork but don't have money, you can request a 120-day extension but takeaway there is you never not want to file. you'll get one of the worst penalties. 5% a month up to 25% of what you owe. you won't escape it.

>> it's going to be a