Filing An Amended Tax Return & How To Go About It

Filing An Amended Tax Return & How To Go About It

You might suddenly realize a mistake on your tax return; it is not a cause to panic. Uncle Sam knows mistakes sometimes happen, so there is a provision to take care of this via filing an amended tax return. Filing an amended tax return involves having a copy of the original tax return alongside all new information that will support the amendment. 

Whatever the reason for the amendment – to correct an error, score extra deductions or report, amending a tax return provides the perfect way to set the records straight with your tax.

Do I need to file an Amended Tax Return?

Uncle Sam could be lenient enough at times to help you fix simple errors when reviewing your return. However, sometimes when you access new information like tax deductions, you suddenly know you qualified for or an error like the wrong claim of a dependent. You will need to make corrections by filing an amended tax return. 

Taxpayers need to fix errors on their tax returns, even if that will mean owing extra funds. This is better than facing heavy fines or the stress of an audit later on. For the following changes, filing an amended tax return is advisable:

  • Changing the filing status you used

  • Claiming other income amount

  • Correction to an income you claimed or did not claim

  • Modification of a claimed or unclaimed tax credit

  • Adjusting your dependent’s status

There are errors in which you don't need to file such a return. Sample mistakes where you need not file such are:

  • Mathematical Errors: While processing your tax return, Uncle Sam usually catches and adjust any math error

  • Missing Forms: If you did not attach an essential form like 1099 to your original tax return, Uncle Sam would typically ask for such via mail.

Filing an Amended Tax Return: Essential Steps 

Your original tax return needs to be fully processed, and you need to have collected your refund or paid any outstanding tax before you file the amended tax return. 

Make sure to be diligent with all the steps to reduce any chance of errors

  1. Get all supporting documents

You need a copy of all essential supporting documents like completed worksheets or schedules. Also, copies of the primary tax return you submitted alongside the forms you submitted initially should be intact.

  1. Print Form 10040-X Online 

One also needs a copy of the amended tax return – Form 1040X. For people correcting more than one year, this requires one 1040-X for each year. People born before 1955 can file using Form 1040-SR.

  1. Examine the Amended Return

Ensure to examine and review your primary tax return, alongside the correcting material to confirm all supplied information. For people who worked with tax-filing firms, ask if there is an opportunity to assist with tax amendment. 

  1. Fill and Submit all Forms to Uncle Sam

Uncle Sam has a set of instructions to guide taxpayers on filing Form 1040-X. It also directs taxpayers on where they will send the form.

Uncle Sam advises that taxpayers include the changes straight in the margin of their original tax return. With this, it will be easier to get the numbers transferred to Form 1040-X. Make sure to check the box above the form that indicates the year you are amending.

  1. Check the Status of Your Amended Return

After mailing your return, leave three weeks before you track the form online. By checking, you will see if Uncle Sam needs more information, so you get in touch with them to supply such. 


Make sure you do not delay if you feel you need to submit an amended tax return. There is a deadline on the waiting period, which is three years from the period you submitted the faulty tax return, or simply two years from the tax payment date. 



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