How to File an Amended Tax Return

What you must know
29 June 2020

How to File an Amended Tax Return – What you must know

Do you need to fix your tax return? File an AMENDED return to correct it!

Here are some tips to keep in mind.

  • Amending to claim an additional refund.  If you haven’t received the refund from your original filing, don’t file the amended until you do.  When you receive the refund, cash the check. Then file the amended return.  Processing of amended returns takes 3-4 months.  You will receive any additional refund you are owed.
  • Amending to pay additional tax. If you are filing because you owe tax, file the amended return and pay the tax as soon as possible! This will minimize the penalties and interest. Use one of several payment methods allowed by the IRS.
  • Penalties and Interest?  Keep in mind that if you are amending because you owe additional taxes, you may receive a bill from the IRS for additional Penalties & Interest after you have paid the tax.
  • What form to use?  Use IRS Form 1040X to amend your federal return.  This form needs to be mailed to the IRS, E-filing is not offered. [Update-the IRS announced plans to offer E-filing of Amended Returns]
  • Other Forms.  If you are changing the reported amounts on other forms, for example Sch A, B, C, D, etc, make sure you attach the changed Schedules to Form 1040X when you file the form. If you don’t, it will cause delays in processing.
  • State concerns?  Changes to your Federal return more than likely mean changes to your State return. If you live in a state with an income tax, amend your state income tax filing also.  See your state’s website for details.
  • How much time do I have?  You have no more than three years from the date you filed your original return to claim a refund. (You can also file it no more than two years from the date you paid the tax, if that date is later than the three-year rule.)
  • What happened to my Amended Return?  This is a common question due to the IRS’ slow processing of Amended tax returns.  They have an answer! “Where’s My Amended Return?” Click it for details.

While the process of amending your Tax Return can be tedious and drawn out, getting it fixed as soon as possible will be beneficial in the long run.

Jeff Roltgen, Tax Rescue CPA

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