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I made a mistake on my tax return. How can I correct it?

After you file a tax return you discover that you omitted income or made another kind of mistake, you must file an amended return to correct it.

  • Complete and mail the paper Form 1040X, Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return. 

  • Starting with 2019 returns, you can file amended returns electronically. They can be filed for the current and 2 prior years Beginning with the 2021 return. Earlier amended returns must be filed on paper even if you originally filed it electronically. 

  • If you must mail the Form 1040X, send it to the address listed in the form’s instructions. However, when filing Form 1040X in response to a notice received from the IRS, you should mail it to the address shown on the notice.

  • If you used other IRS forms or schedules to make changes, you should attach those schedules to your Form 1040X.

  • You should not amend a tax return to correct math errors; the IRS will make the math corrections for you and send you a notice.

  • You should also not amend if you forgot to include a required form or schedule. The IRS will mail a request about the missing item.

  • If you are amending tax returns for more than one year, you will need a separate 1040X for each tax year. You should mail each tax year’s Form 1040X in separate envelopes. Tip: Use Certified Mail to prove that you filed the return before the expiration of the statute of limitations for receiving refunds. (see below)

  • You should wait for the refund from their original tax return before filing an amended return. You can cash the refund check from the original return before receiving any additional refund.

  • If you are filing an amended return because you owe more tax should file Form 1040X and pay the tax as soon as possible. This will limit interest and penalty charges.

  • Generally, to claim a refund, you must file a Form 1040X within three years from the date you timely filed their original tax return or within two years from the date you paid the tax whichever is later.


You can track the status of an amended return three weeks after mailing using “Where’s My Amended Return?” Processing can take up to 16 weeks.

The IRS has more information here.

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