Filing an Amended Tax Return

Hickory CPA Firm

What should you do if you already filed your federal tax return and then discover a mistake? First of all, don’t worry. In most cases, all you have to do is file an amended tax return. But before you do that, here is what you should be aware of when filing an amended tax return.

Taxpayers should use Form 1040X, Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return, to file an amended (corrected) tax return and Form D-400X for an amended North Carolina Income Tax Return. You must file the corrected tax return on paper. An amended return cannot be e-filed. Please call if you need assistance preparing or filing Form 1040X or Form D-400X.

If you need to file another schedule or form, don’t forget to attach it to the amended return as well as any other form in your return that changed due to the amendment. An amended tax return should only be filed to correct errors or make changes to your original tax return. For example, you should amend your return if you need to change your filing status, or correct your income, deductions or credits.

You may not need to file an amended return to correct math errors because generally the IRS automatically makes those changes for you. Also, do not file an amended return because you forgot to attach tax forms, such as W-2s or schedules to your original paper file return. The IRS normally will mail you a request asking for those.

Note: Eligible taxpayers who filed a 2014 tax return and claimed a premium tax credit using incorrect information from either the federally facilitated or a state-based Health Insurance Marketplace, generally do not have to file an amended return regardless of the nature of the error, even if additional taxes would be owed. The IRS may contact you to ask for a copy of your corrected Form 1095-A to verify the information.

Nonetheless, you may choose to file an amended return because some taxpayers may find that filing an amended return may reduce their tax owed or increase your refund (see below for additional information).

If you are amending more than one tax year return, prepare a 1040X for each return year and mail them to the IRS in separate envelopes. Note the tax year of the return you are amending at the top of Form 1040X. You will find the appropriate IRS address to mail your return to in the Form 1040X instructions. The same procedure applies to the state. If you are filing an amended tax return to claim an additional refund, wait until you have received your original tax refund before filing Form 1040X or Form D-400X NC state return.  Amended returns normally take up to 16 weeks to process. You may cash your original refund check while waiting for the additional refund. If you owe additional taxes with the amended returns, file the returns and pay the tax as soon as possible to minimize interest and penalties.

Generally, you must file Form 1040X and D400-X within three years from the date you filed your original tax return or within two years of the date you paid the tax, whichever is later. For example, the last day for most people to file a 2012 claim for a refund is April 15, 2016. Special rules may apply to certain claims. For more information call our office 828-322-5813.

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