Many tax returns are submitted every year that are not correct in either math or missing forms. Sometimes the service center will make corrections for tax preparers. Other times you are not required to amend these returns. A tax consultant at a reputable tax resolution firm can give you good advice by looking at the filings to determine if they must be amended.
If you used the wrong filing status, your total income is incorrect, or your deductions or credits are wrong, you need to amend the return to insure you are not assessed inaccuracy penalties and to avoid audit situations.
To amend a return you would use a form 1040x to correct a form 1040, 1040a or a 1040EZ.If you are filing to claim an additional refund, wait until you have received your original refund (you may cash that check)]. Be sure to enter the year of the return you are amending at the top of Form 1040X. The form has three columns. Column A is used to show original or adjusted figures from the original return. Column C is used to show the corrected figures. The difference between the figures in Columns A and C is shown in Column B. There is an area on the back of the form where you explain the specific changes being made on the return and the reason for each change. If the changes involve another schedule or form, attach it to the 1040X. For example, if you are filing a 1040X because you have a qualifying child and now want to claim the Earned Income Credit, you must attach a Form 1040 Schedule EIC (PDF) to show the qualifying person's name, year of birth, and social security number.
Generally, to claim a refund, Form 1040X must be received within 3 years from the date you filed your original return or within 2 years from the date you paid the tax, whichever is later.
Just remember when you make adjustments on a federal return this can effect your state returns also. Make sure your tax preparer looks at your state returns to see if they must be adjusted or amended.
Corporations would use Form 1130 Corporation Application for Tentative Refund in order to carry back a net operating loss from the current year in lieu of filing Form 1120X. The filing deadline for this form is December 31, 2005 to carryback a 2004 net operating loss to 2002 and 2003.
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