Help Amending Your Tax Return - 8 Tips to Make The Fix Quick

You’ve filed your taxes, received your refund (or made your payment), and breathe a sigh of relief knowing that you won’t have to deal with taxes for another year….and then you receive a 1099, W2 or other tax document in the mail!  Great! Time to panic – your taxes are wrong, you already filed, what you do now!


Amend your return. It might sound like a pain but it’s really not that hard. And it’s much easier than might think. Below are 8 tips to help you quickly and easily amend your tax return.

  1. 1040X - The first think you need is the right tax form. It’s called a 1040X and located here on the IRS website. Remember this form cannot be e-filed, I anticipate this in the future but for now be prepared to us mail (We use certified mail so you can track it and prove the IRS received it).

  2. Filling out the Form - Ok you’ve sharpened your pencil and have your 1040X. Now just fill out the form. In column A you input the information from your original return. Column B is where your changes are made. And Column C is where the correct amount is listed. It’s really that easy. Especially if you are using tax software as they generally fill out the columns for you. Don’t forget to write a simple explanation of your changes at the bottom of the form.  Then just sign, date, and send it in. Also, if you are amending your Federal Return you probably need to amend your state return as well. Minnesota’s form M1X is found here.

  3. Why Amend your Return – Ok slow down there, before you fill out the form let’s make sure you have to do the additional work. You should amend your return if you are changing your filing status, dependents, total income, deductions, and credits. (so just about everything).  But the IRS will catch and correct most math errors and missing forms when processing your original return. No need to amend just for this.

  4. Other Schedules and Forms – If your amendment affects a certain schedule like Schedule E or C then you should include these forms with your 1040X.

  5. Additional Refund – If you are filing to claim an additional refund wait until you receive your original refund before filing your 1040X. You can cash the first check while waiting for your additional refund check.

  6. Additional Payment – If you owe additional tax as a result of the amendment you should file the 1040X as soon as possible and send payment. This will limit any additional interest and penalties.

  7. Time Limits – You can claim a refund within three years from the date you filed your original return. Or within two years from the date you paid the tax, whichever is later.

  8. Procession Time – The “normal” processing time for an amended return is 8-12 weeks. So be patient. You can always check the status of your amended refund here.

PJF Tax can help you amend your tax return and will even receive past returns for mistakes. Just reach out for a meeting or a quote!

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Thanks For Another Great Tax Season