What is Form 1040ez

Of the three major tax forms, Form 1040EZ is the shortest and simplest to complete.

You can’t use this form if the 1040EZ restrictions apply to you or you don’t meet the 1040EZ requirements. Instead, you’ll have to file Form 1040A or Form 1040.

These are the restrictions on filing a 1040EZ:

  • You can’t itemize deductions.
  • You can’t have income from:
    • Self-employment
    • Alimony
    • Dividends
    • Capital gains
  • You can’t claim credits or deductions, except the Earned Income Credit (EIC). So you can’t claim:
    • Charitable donations
    • Mortgage interest paid
    • Credits for child- and dependent-care expenses
    • Education credits
    • Advance premium tax credit/premium tax credit

If you want to file 1040EZ, all of these must be true:

  • Your filing status is single or married filing jointly.
  • You don’t claim dependents.
  • Your taxable income is less than $100,000.
  • Your income sources were only:
    • Wages
    • Salaries
    • Tips reported on your W-2, Boxes 5 and 7
    • Taxable scholarships
    • Taxable fellowship grants
    • Unemployment compensation
    • Alaska Permanent Fund dividends
  • Your taxable interest is $1,500 or less.
  • You don’t claim adjustments to income, like student-loan interest or an IRA deduction.
  • The only credit you claim is the EIC.
  • You and your spouse, if married filing jointly, were under age 65 and not blind at the end of 2017. If you were born Jan. 1, 1950, you’re considered to be age 65 and can’t use Form 1040EZ.
  • You don’t owe household employment taxes on wages you paid to a household employee.
  • You aren’t a debtor in a Chapter 11 bankruptcy case filed after Oct. 16, 2005.
  • You don’t owe Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) or aren’t required to file Form 6251: AMT.

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