When to File an Amended Return


Filing an amended tax return can be done in several easy steps.

Filing an amended tax return can be done in several easy steps.

Westchester tax preparers at Herman & Company CPA’s have all the answers to your personal finance questions!

Oops! You discovered an error after filing your tax return. Should you file an amended return? The answer depends on the type of error. The IRS usually corrects mathematical errors or requests missing forms (such as W-2s) or schedules. In these cases, do not amend your return.

File an amended return if any of the following were reported incorrectly:

  • Your filing status
  • Your total income
  • Your deductions or credits

Use Form 1040X (Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return), clearly identifying the year of the return that your are amending at the top of the form, to correct a paper or electronically filed Form 1040, 1040A, or 1040EZ. A separate 1040X is required for each year that you are amending and each form must be mailed in a separate envelope to the IRS processing center for your state. Addresses for the centers can be found in the 1040X instructions.

Form 1040X has three columns: Column A for original or adjusted figures from the filed return; Column C for corrected figures; Column B to show the difference between the figures in Columns A and C. Explain the items that you are changing on the back of the form. If the changes involve another schedule or form, attach it to the 1040X. For example, if you are filing a 1040X because you have a qualifying child and want to claim the Earned Income Tax Credit, you must complete and attach a Schedule EIC to the amended return.

If you are filing to claim an additional refund, wait until receive the refund from your original form before filing Form 1040X. If you owe additional tax for the prior year, Form 1040X must have been filed and the tax paid by April 15th of this year to avoid any penalty and interest charges.

Generally, you must file Form 1040X to claim a refund within three years from the date that you filed your original return, or within two years from the date that you paid the tax, whichever is later. Please contact our Westchester tax preparation firm for more information on amending a tax return.

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