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What is Form 1040-X: Requirements & How to Fill it Out

What is Form 1040-X: Requirements & How to Fill it Out

The IRS issued Form 1040-X to taxpayers with errors on their tax returns. The form is for correction, deletion, and addition of information to the same form submitted to the IRS. For example, if you get a W-2 or 1099 to file omitted income or if your ex or spouse also claimed your child as a dependent, you'll need the form to make corrections.

How Form 1040-X Works

Form 1040-X is for correcting errors on Form 1040. All corrections regarding Form 1040 are restated in 1040-X, including the correct information from the previous form. In essence, the IRS expects taxpayers to file Form 1040-X if the correction changes the last return tax figures. 

Taxpayers can use the form to correct filing status, change income figures, and make deductions or credits. In addition, you can use it after the tax deadline to make elections or claim for loss or unused credit. 

Requirements for Filing Form 1040-X

The IRS gives taxpayers three months to correct their tax errors or ask for a refund. The window starts from the day you filed the report or April 15 or other dates in case of an extension. In essence, your refund will be calculated from two years back if you don't make the three-year window. 

In return, the IRS also has a three-year window to review your taxes or extend the time depending on your case. In addition, a taxpayer with additional income or who wants to restate deductions needs to send an amended form to the IRS. However, the form cannot be used for refundable tax credits.

How to File Form 1040-X

  • Form 1040-X is for the itemizing method with different sections for different adjustments. Taxpayers can record different types and amounts of each amendment with a brief description of the reason for the amendment and what is amended. 

  • Taxpayers using Form 1040-X are to include the previous report on 1040 or 1040-SR with attachments of forms and schedules, even if they are untouched.  

  • The IRS expects the form by electronic method or mailed to their office.

  • Taxpayers can only request the form after filing annual tax returns.

In addition, taxpayers are to include the following documents with the form:

  • Other income-related forms like W-2s or 1099

  • Document or forms to support your amendment.

Here are some tips the IRS provides to help taxpayers with Form 1040-X:

  • The IRS urges taxpayers to wait for the first refund before filing Form 1040-X. After receiving the first due, the office will send the second due separately if warranted. 

  • Also, Uncle Sam urges taxpayers to file Form 1040-X within a three-year period. The window grace starts from the day you submit your tax returns or within two years from the same date or later. 

After You File Form 1040-X

After submitting Form 1040-X, the returns will go through scrutiny to verify the sufficiency and the documented changes on the return. In addition, they will send you a letter requesting specific information or additional documentation to explain the amendment further. However, the amended tax return is scrutinized to ensure the form is correct and accurate. Also, you can expect a quick reply from the IRS if your amended tax return is properly explained and documented.

There is no certainty that an amended tax form will attract an audit. The document requested by the IRS is to make it easier when reviewing the form, but the office can corroborate the information on their system. However, it undergoes the same screening process as a regular return. 

What are the Benefits of Filing Form 1040-X?

Form 1040-X is good for deductions, credits, and exemptions. The filing may be cumbersome, but you can feel relief knowing the benefits attached to it. Here are some tax benefits to filing an amended tax return:

  • Claiming additional tax credits

  • Taking additional deductions

  • Getting a (bigger) refund



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