Do You Need To Amend Your Income Tax Return?

So tax season is over and you have filed your returns.  You are finished with taxes for yet another year.  Yippee!

That is until you go to your mailbox and find a corrected income tax statement.  A financial institution discovered an error in what was previously reported and the numbers have changed.  So now what do you do?

Pull out your tax file for 2017 and proceed to file an amended return.  You need to file an amended return if there is a change in your filing status, income, deductions or credits using form 1040X.  It really isn’t as cumbersome as your original return, however.

Should you find that you owe additional tax, you should immediately proceed to pay the additional tax as penalties and/or interest can be assessed.  If you find that you are entitled to a refund, the Form 1040X must be filed within 3 years of the date you filed your original return or within 2 years after the date you paid the tax, whichever is later.

Preparing a Form 1040ZX has three columns which must be completed.  Column A shows your original figures reported on your Form 1040.  Column C shows what the figures should be and Column B reflects the amount of adjustment.  There is also an area for you to explain the reason for filing Form 1040X.  Amended returns cannot be e-filed and the instructions provide the correct address for you to mail your return.  When mailing your return, you should include a copy of the documentation you received which necessitated the amendment.

If you needed to amend your federal return, chances are that you need to amend your state return.  Information can be located on the website for your state taxing authority with regard to the procedure.  Additional information regarding amended returns can be located on the IRS website at by searching for amended returns or Form 1040X.


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About the Author

Kay Sowa is a paralegal in the Trusts and Estates Group at Capehart & Scatchard, P.A. She is an IRS Enrolled Agent, an Accredited Estate Planner®, and a Certified Trust and Fiduciary Advisor. She oversees the trust and estate administration practice for the firm. She is an accomplished author and lecturer who has frequently spoken on behalf of a number of organizations including the National Business Institute and the Institute of Paralegal Education.

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