When and how to amend a tax return
Everyone makes mistakes, but it is safe to say that a mistake on a federal income tax return causes more stress and anxiety than most mistakes. When you file your tax return, you may find that you made a mistake. The process of amending a return is actually not that difficult, but the understanding of how and when to amend a tax return can be. This article will provide some clarity on the issue.
Amending a tax return is no harder than filing your taxes, it just requires knowledge of what forms to fill out and when. The first step in amending your tax return is to determine if you need to amend it.
Most people will file an amended return because they forgot to include a W-2 or 1099. Others will need to amend it because they made a math error or used the wrong filing status. If you are unsure if you need to amend, the best thing to do is speak with a tax professional.
When to amend your tax return
Generally, you must file an amended return within three years of the date you filed your original return or within two years of the date you paid the tax, whichever is later.
If you discover that you made a mistake on your tax return after you have filed, you will need to amend the return. The most common reasons for amending a tax return are:
- You forgot to include a W2 or 1099
- You included the wrong amount of taxable income
- You miscalculated your deductions or credits
- You filed the wrong filing status
- You claimed the incorrect amount of dependents
- You need to claim premium tax credits
If any of these scenarios apply to you, then you will need to file an amended return. The process is actually quite simple. All you need to do is file a 1040-X form with the IRS. This form is available on the IRS website, and instructions are included.
What is a premium tax credit?
Under the Affordable Care Act, you may be eligible for a premium tax credit if you do not have access to affordable health insurance through your employer or another source. This tax credit can help offset the cost of premiums for an individual plan that is purchased on government-run exchanges.
If you think you may be eligible for the premium tax credit, you can claim it when you file your taxes. However, if you later find out that you are not eligible, you will need to amend your tax return to remove the credit.
In many cases, a tax break will only last for a few years. Be sure to check if you filed for any tax breaks that are no longer available in that tax year.
How to amend your tax return
The 1040-X form is used to make corrections to your already filed 1040, 1040A, or 1040EZ tax return. You will need to complete the form and mail it to the IRS. Be sure to include any schedules or forms that are required with the 1040-X.
To amend your return, you will need to file a new Form 1040X, Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return. You will need to fill out the form completely and accurately. Be sure to include any additional forms or schedules that are required for the changes you are making.
It is also important to attach a copy of your amended federal return to your amended state return.
Do you owe any additional taxes?
You will also need to send a check for any additional taxes owed, if applicable. If you are owed a refund, the IRS will process your amended return and send you a check.
The 1040-X must be postmarked within 3 years of the date you filed your original return, or within 2 years of the date on which you paid the tax, whichever is later.
It can take up to 16 weeks for the IRS to process an amended return. You can check the status of your refund by visiting the IRS website or by calling the IRS.
When not to amend your tax return
There are some instances when it is not necessary to amend your tax return. For example, if you forgot to include a schedule or form with your original return, the IRS will send you a notice and request the missing information. You do not need to file an amended return in this case; simply respond to the IRS notice and send them the missing information.
If you owe taxes and cannot pay the amount due, do not file an amended return. The IRS will work with you to set up a payment plan. Filing an amended return will not change the fact that you owe taxes, and it could lead to additional penalties and interest.
Didn’t get your refund?
If you are due a tax refund, there is no need to file an amended return. The IRS will process your original return and send you a check. If you’ve already received a tax refund then you know the IRS has already processed your return.
If you have moved since you filed your return, be sure to notify the IRS of your new address, so they can send you a refund.
The best way to avoid having to file an amended tax return is to double-check your original return before you file it. Make sure all the information is correct and that you have included all the necessary forms and schedules. Show the necessary changes and adjust your tax liability accordingly.
If you are unsure about anything, be sure to speak with a tax professional before filing.
Filing an amended tax return can be a hassle, but it is often necessary to ensure you get the maximum refund or to avoid penalties and interest. By following the instructions above, you can easily file an amended tax return with the IRS.
How hiring a tax attorney can help
While you are not required to have an attorney file an amended tax return, there are several situations where it may be beneficial to hire one.
If you owe taxes and are unable to pay, a tax attorney can negotiate with the IRS on your behalf to set up a payment plan.
Legal counseling can save time, money, and additional stress
A tax attorney can also represent you in court if the IRS takes legal action against you.
If you discover that you made a mistake on your return after you have already filed, a tax attorney can help you determine if you need to file an amended return.
They can also help ensure that the process is done correctly and efficiently.
Are you being audited?
If you are being audited by the IRS, a tax attorney can represent you and help you navigate the audit process.
If you are facing criminal charges related to your taxes, a tax attorney is essential. They can help you understand the charges against you and build a defense.
Hiring a tax attorney can be expensive, but in some cases, it is worth the investment. If you are facing a complex tax situation, an attorney can provide valuable guidance and representation.
Talk to an experienced tax attorney today
To learn more about when and how to amend your tax return, speak with an experienced tax attorney today. They can help you understand your options and work to resolve any issues related to your taxes.
At Damiens Law, our team of professionals can help you navigate the confusing and stressful world of taxes. If you have tax payments you owe, need to file an amended tax return, or have questions, call (601) 957-9672 or contact us here.