MAKING AMENDS: How to File an Amended Return

Hey there! So, you’ve just wrapped up your taxes, hit submit, and breathed a sigh of relief—until you realize there’s a math error, or maybe you forgot to include some income. Don’t worry, it’s more common than you think, and there’s a solution: filing an amended tax return.

Now, don’t panic. Amending your tax return isn’t as daunting as it sounds. It’s basically like saying, “Oops, my bad!” to the IRS and fixing any mistakes you’ve made. Here’s the lowdown on when and how to do it, minus the complicated tax jargon.

First off, why might you need to file an amended return? Well, if you need to tweak things like your filing status, income, deductions, credits, or if there are any pesky math errors or missing schedules, then it’s time to whip out that amended return form.

Math Mistakes and Missing Schedules

But hey, here’s some good news: if you just goofed on a math calculation or forgot to attach a form, you might not need to file an amended return. The IRS is pretty hands-on about fixing those kinds of slip-ups themselves. They’ll shoot you a letter if they need any extra info.

The IRS is Here to Assist You!

Feeling unsure about whether you need to file an amended return? No problemo. The IRS has this handy dandy tool called the Interactive Tax Assistant on their website. It’ll walk you through whether you need to make any changes to your return.

How To Make Amends

Now, onto the nitty-gritty of actually filing that amended return. You’ll want to use Form 1040-X, also known as the Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return. It’s like a special fix-it form just for situations like this. And guess what? You can even file it electronically for certain tax years, which makes the whole process a lot smoother.

Once you’ve hit submit on your amended return, you might be itching to know what’s up with it. The good news is that you can track its progress using the Where’s My Amended Return tool online. Just give it about three weeks after you’ve filed, and you’ll be able to see where your amendment is in the pipeline.

Oh, and if you’re wondering about your refund status while you’re at it, you can use the Where’s My Refund tool to check on that too. Just plug in some info to prove you’re you, and voila! You’ll get the scoop on where your money is.

Now, here’s a heads up: while most refunds get zipped out in less than three weeks for e-filers who opted for direct deposit, some returns might take a bit longer. If your return needs a little extra TLC or has some hiccups, it might take a smidge more time to process.


In a nutshell, filing an amended tax return isn’t as daunting as it may seem. Remember, it’s all about fixing mistakes and ensuring your tax return is accurate. Use resources like the IRS Interactive Tax Assistant to guide you through the process, and don’t hesitate to file Form 1040-X if needed. While the IRS tools can be helpful, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or unsure, seeking assistance from a Certified Tax Planner could provide invaluable support. They can navigate the complexities, offer personalized advice, and ensure your tax matters are handled with precision. So, take a deep breath, follow these steps, and remember, you’re not alone on this tax journey!