Filing for an amendment
To file an amended tax return, taxpayers will need to use the current Form 1040X, which can now be filed electronically. Taxpayers should make sure to identify which year they’re amending at the top of Form 1040X page one. To complete the amended return they’ll need to:
- Enter the amount from the original return or as adjusted by the IRS
- Enter the NEW correct amount
- Show the difference between the two amounts
- Explain each change by line: This may seem complicated, and it can be, but like fixing any mistake at work or at home -- just be careful.
Form 1040X, Page 1 has three columns. Column A shows amounts from the original return. Column B shows the net increase or decrease for the amounts you are changing, and column C shows the corrected amounts. Taxpayers should explain what they are changing and the reasons why on Page 2 of the form.
If a taxpayer is amending more than one year, they must use separate Forms 1040X for each tax year. In addition, each year should be sent separately to the IRS.
When taxpayers send their amended tax returns to the IRS, they also need to include copies of all other schedules or forms that have changes, any new forms created, and any W-2s or 1099s received after the original tax return was filed. Do NOT include a new Form 1040 with the return. If a form was changed between the original or amended returns, write “AMENDED” at the top of the changed form. Make sure you include any NEW W-2s or 1099s reported on the amended return, but DO NOT include W-2s or 1099s that you sent in with your prior return.
Generally, if a taxpayer amends their federal return, they must also amend their state tax return. If they forget this step, it could cause a lot of headaches down the line since the IRS notifies the state of any amended return received. So – when amending – do both federal and state (if there is a state return requirement).
It can take up to 16 weeks, or four months, for the IRS to process an amended return. So don’t get in a hurry! It could be shorter or longer, but generally, it takes several weeks. During this COVID-19 time, amended returns are often taking even longer to process. And states can take just as long!
If a taxpayer decides they want to amend a tax return, it’s important it’s done right. So, it’s a good idea to schedule an appointment with a Tax Pro today at jacksonhewitt.com.