Can You Amend a Tax Return?: How to Fix an Error

September 09, 2019 : Violeta Stauffer-Rodriguez – Past Contributor

Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on Feb. 25, 2018. 

Filing your taxes is one of those projects that may feel overwhelming. It can be almost intimidating when you get to the end and have to press that final button to file your return. Here is some information to help put you at ease if you make a mistake. For almost any kind of error, know this: it is fixable. You can file an amended tax return to correct errors and still go back three years to claim an additional refund if you missed a credit or deduction.

What is an amended tax form?

Most individual tax returns can be amended by mailing in a Form 1040X. This form amends a previously filed Form 1040, Form 1040A, or 1040EZ Forms.

You can use this Form 1040X if there are changes in your filing status, income, credits or deductions. (Read more about common mistakes taxpayers make, and how to avoid them.) The IRS does recommend that you wait until you get your original refund before you submit an amendment. Don’t worry – the amended return deadline is generous, so you should have plenty of time to wait on your refund and still file your amendment. Usually, you have three years to file an amended return.

How and when can I amend my tax return?

You’ll need to send an amended return by mail. You can access the Form 1040X on the IRS website. Check the Form 1040X Instructions to find your state’s IRS Service Center address. Or, of course, H&R Block tax professionals can help you file an amended return. Find an office close to you to get started.

As for when to amend your tax return, that part is easy. If you’ve already filed your 2018 return, you’ll be able to file an amended return. If you filed your original return before the normal tax deadline (usually April 15) and find an error that would make you owe more money, you might want to hurry. If you file your amendment before the normal tax due date, you can avoid penalties and interest.

Don’t make any additions or edits to your current return. You’ll need the information entered in your original return to complete Form 1040X.

When will I hear back after I file an amended tax return?

You can expect for your amendment to be processed in 8-12 weeks. You can use the IRS website to check in on your return’s status.

Now you can rest assured. If you find an error, it can be fixed.

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Violeta Stauffer-Rodriguez – Past Contributor

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