TurboTax / Tax Calculators & Tips / All Tax Guides / General Tax Tips / How to Correct Federal Tax Returns

How to Correct Federal Tax Returns

Updated for Tax Year 2016


OVERVIEW

The IRS has a simple process in place that allows you to amend your tax return. Find out how to amend your tax return in this article on tax tips.


Overview

You do your best to file a correct tax return. You gather all your W-2s, 1099s, receipts and other documents and navigate through all of the information to find the right schedules and forms. Sometimes, however, new information arises after you file your tax return. Maybe you discovered a tax credit you didn't realize you qualified for, or missed a 1099 form because it came in late. Fortunately, the IRS has a simple process in place that allows you to amend your tax return.

Step 1 - Gather all new tax documents

This includes any new 1099 or W-2 you receive if you under-reported your income. If you are claiming a new deduction or credit, any document that supports your eligibility to claim it such as a receipt will be helpful. It's also a good idea to have a copy of your original tax return available.

Step 2 - Form 1040X

Download a copy of IRS Form 1040X, Amended U.S. Income Tax Return. This is the only form you can use to amend a personal tax return. You can easily find it using the search function on the TurboTax website.

If you originally filed your return with TurboTax, we can help you amend it.

Step 3 - Identify the error or amendment you wish to make

If you are correcting an error on your original tax return, you will need a blank copy of that particular form from the same year. This will allow you to recalculate your tax and to see which numbers on the original tax return will change as a result of the amendment. You can find IRS forms from prior years using TurboTax's prior-year returns function, or you can search through the IRS website for it.

Step 4 - Download and prepare new schedules and attachments

When you prepare an amended return, the IRS only wants you to update figures that change. It doesn't require you to complete an entire tax return. However, if any of the original schedules you filed will change because of your amendment, then those schedules must be prepared again and attached to your Form 1040X.

Step 5 - Fill out Form 1040X according to the instructions

Write a clear explanation of your reasons for filing the Form 1040X. Attach all forms you are amending along with any new supporting documentation and mail them to the address provided for your location in the Form 1040 instructions. This will be the same IRS service center that processed your original income tax return. Include a payment for any additional tax due. If you don't include the payment, the IRS may assess interest and penalties on the unpaid balance.

Filing an amendment with TurboTax

If you filed your original return with TurboTax Online, simply log in to your account and select “Amend a return that was filed and accepted.” If you used our CD/download product, sign back into your return and select “Amend a filed return.”

Tips
• You must file a separate Form 1040X for each tax return you are amending.

Heads up
• Amended returns can take up to three months for the IRS to process.

Get every deduction you deserve

TurboTax Deluxe searches more than 350 tax deductions and credits so you get your maximum refund, guaranteed.

For only $54.99$34.99*
Start for Free

Looking for more information?

The above article is intended to provide generalized financial information designed to educate a broad segment of the public; it does not give personalized tax, investment, legal, or other business and professional advice. Before taking any action, you should always seek the assistance of a professional who knows your particular situation for advice on taxes, your investments, the law, or any other business and professional matters that affect you and/or your business.


Security is built into everything we do
Here's how
* Important Offer Details and Disclosures
  • TURBOTAX ONLINE/MOBILE

  • Try for Free/Pay When You File: TurboTax online and mobile pricing is based on your tax situation and varies by product. Free 1040EZ/1040A + Free State offer only available with TurboTax Federal Free Edition; Offer may change or end at any time without notice. Actual prices are determined at the time of print or e-file and are subject to change without notice. Savings and price comparisons based on anticipated price increase expected in March. Special discount offers may not be valid for mobile in-app purchases.
  • QuickBooks Bonus Offer with TurboTax Self-Employed: File your 2016 federal return with TurboTax Self-Employed by 4/18/17 and receive a complimentary subscription to QuickBooks Self-Employed until 4/30/18 at no additional cost. After you file your taxes, you must activate your QuickBooks Self-Employed subscription by 7/15/2017 by logging into QuickBooks Self-Employed via mobile app or at https://selfemployed.intuit.com/login. Once activated, you will have access to QuickBooks Self-Employed until 4/30/2018.
    Offer valid only for new QuickBooks Self-Employed customers.
    • When you use TurboTax Self-Employed to file your 2017 taxes, you will have the option to renew your QuickBooks Self-Employed subscription. If you do not file with TurboTax Self-Employed by 4/30/2018, your QuickBooks Self-Employed subscription will automatically renew on 5/1/2018 for another year at the then-current annual subscription rate. You may cancel your subscription at any time from within the QuickBooks Self-Employed billing section.
  • Pays for itself: In order to pay for the price of TurboTax Self-Employed, you will need at least $600 in deductible business expenses. This calculation is based on the self-employment tax income rate for tax year 2016.
  • Anytime, anywhere: Internet access required; standard message and data rates apply to download and use mobile app.
  • Fastest refund possible: Fastest tax refund with e-file and direct deposit; tax refund time frames will vary.
  • Pay for TurboTax out of your federal refund: $X.XX Refund Processing Service fee applies to this payment method. Prices are subject to change without notice.
  • TurboTax Expert Help, Tax Advice and SmartLook: Included with Deluxe, Premier and Self-Employed (via phone or SmartLook); not included with Federal Free Edition. Feature availability varies by device. State tax advice is free. Service, experience levels, hours of operation and availability vary, and are subject to restriction and change without notice.
  • #1 best-selling tax software: Based on aggregated sales data for all tax year 2015 TurboTax products.
  • Most Popular: TurboTax Deluxe is our most popular product among TurboTax Online users with more complex tax situations.
  • CompleteCheck: Covered under the TurboTax accurate calculations and maximum refund guarantees.
  • TurboTax Self-Employed Expense Finder: Available only in TurboTax Self-Employed. Not available for people with certain types of expenses and tax situations including paying contractors or employees, home office or vehicle actuals, inventory, self employed health insurance or retirement, asset depreciation, sale of property or vehicles, and farm income. Some financial institutions limit the timeframe for which historical transactions may be imported by ExpenseFinder. ExpenseFinder expected late January (late February for mobile app).
  • TURBOTAX CD/DOWNLOAD SOFTWARE

  • TurboTax CD/Download products: Price includes tax preparation and printing of federal tax returns and free federal e-file of up to 5 federal tax returns. Additional fees apply for e-filing state returns. E-file fees do not apply to New York state returns. Savings and price comparison based on anticipated price increase expected in March. Prices subject to change without notice.
  • Fastest refund possible: Fastest tax refund with e-file and direct deposit; tax refund time frames will vary.
  • Pay for TurboTax out of your federal refund: $X.XX Refund Processing Service fee applies to this payment method. Prices are subject to change without notice. This benefit is available with TurboTax Federal products except TurboTax Business.
  • About our TurboTax Product Experts: Customer service and product support vary by time of year.
  • About our credentialed tax experts: Live tax advice via phone is included with Premier and Home & Business; fees apply for Basic and Deluxe customers. State tax advice is free. Service, experience levels, hours of operation and availability vary, and are subject to restriction and change without notice. Not available for TurboTax Business customers.
  • #1 best-selling tax software: Based on aggregated sales data for all tax year 2015 TurboTax products.
  • Data Import: Imports financial data from participating companies. Quicken and QuickBooks import not available with TurboTax installed on a Mac. Imports from Quicken (2015 and higher) and QuickBooks Desktop (2011 and higher); both Windows only. Quicken import not available for TurboTax Business. Quicken products provided by Quicken Inc., Quicken import subject to change.