Need to correct a tax return? Here's how to change it

Headshot for Amanda Graber, Content Marketing Specialist for ComplYant, a business tax tool for entrepreneurs and small businesses.
By Mandy Graber

Mistakes were made. There was a glitch in the system, or maybe someone didn’t carry a one in some calculation. Whatever happened, there’s an error. You need to amend your tax return. Fortunately, the IRS has provisions in place to allow for this, and the steps are fairly simple. 

When you discover an issue with a previously filed tax return, it’s important to take action to correct the information you submitted. Don’t feel bad, though. You’re not alone. Many taxpayers need to reconcile errors relating to their filing status, income, deductions, claimed credits, and overall tax liability. 

Taking the proactive step to amend your return shows the IRS the changes you need to make to correct your return. Or you may amend a return if you realize that you’ve missed a money-saving deduction or tax credit. There are a few reasons that typically don’t require an amended return. For example, the IRS will correct any mathematical errors. The IRS can also reach out if they need missing W-2s or other missing forms. 

The IRS has a tool to help you determine if an amended return is necessary. If you still think you need to amend your return, do so as soon as you realize the correction is necessary. Make the process as seamless as possible by following these simple steps, and be sure to keep copies for your records. 

If you filed Form 1040

To amend your original return, you’ll file Form 1040-X. If you need to amend multiple years, you’ll have to fill out a different form for each year. You also need to include each form or schedule that shows the affected changes. To receive a refund, you must file an amended return within two years of paying the tax or within three years of filing the original return, whichever date is later. 

If you filed a Schedule C

A Schedule C is included with your personal tax return to account for your business taxes. If you need to correct your net business income, your Schedule C can be amended by preparing a new, corrected copy.  Note that if this change affects your profit, you’ll also need to complete a new Schedule SE. The changed amount will also need to be included on Form 1040-X’s adjusted gross income line. 

| Needing to amend a tax return isn’t a cause for panic. The IRS has simple steps in place to help you correct mistakes.

If you filed Form 1120 

For a corporation that needs to file an amended return, Form 1120-X is the paperwork that needs to be completed. Much like the process for Form 1040-X, specific line items, such as the original amount, net change, and a corrected amount, must all be included. If you need a refund for estimated taxes, you’ll need to file From 4466.  

For an S corporation, Form 1120-S must be filed with the Box H(4) check to indicate the paperwork is an amended return. Be sure to attach a statement that itemizes each amended entry. You should include the correct amounts and an explanation for each change. If there are any changes to shareholder information, an amended Schedule K-1 is also required. 

If you filed Form 1065

To amend returns for partnerships or multiple-member LLCs, submit a copy of the original return. Then fill out a new Form 1065 and check G(5). Attach a written statement that itemizes each corrected entry and explains each change. If you are not filing electronically, or if certain circumstances apply to you, Form 1065-X may be required. Again, if any income, deduction, credit, or other information on your Schedule K-1 is incorrect, an amended K-1 needs to be filed. You’ll also need to give a copy of the amended Schedule K-1 to each partner or LLC member to file. 

Tax mistakes can happen, but ComplYant helps you get it right

Navigating taxes on top of all the other tasks you have to manage to run your business can be frustrating. There’s lots of paperwork and all of the jargon, but taxes don’t have to leave you frazzled. ComplYant helps make tax simple. Sign up for a free account today, and never miss a deadline

Headshot for Amanda Graber, Content Marketing Specialist for ComplYant, a business tax tool for entrepreneurs and small businesses.
By Mandy Graber
Mandy is a seasoned content creator with experience in a wide variety of industries. She works alongside our ComplYant Tax Experts to help make tax-related content more accessible to everyone. In her long tenure as a writer and content creator, she has covered a wide array of topics, including insurance, education, financial technology, and more.

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