Anyone ever filed an amended tax return?

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by donna723, Feb 6, 2011.

  1. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    I am soooooo confused! I have always done my own taxes and for the last several years I have done them online. Mine have always been very simple with just one W2 form, and I've never had a problem before. But this year, after working for the State for 24 years, I finally officially retired last September so I received my regular paychecks through the end of September, then received pension checks from the State retirement system and Social Security checks for Oct., Nov. and Dec. I also closed out my small 401k account and put the money in the bank - there was a LARGE amount of it taken out for taxes.

    I had all my statements from the 401k plan, from SS, and my W2 from work but the amount on the W2 was quite a bit larger than it should have been from just my regular paychecks through September and I was assuming that it also covered those three months of pension checks from the State. I still wanted to be sure so I called and talked to both the HR person and the payroll person from work. Both of them assured me that I would NOT be getting a second W2 from the retirement system, that I would get only one W2 from the State that would include everything that I received from the State in 2010, both salary and retirement. So I went ahead and filed my taxes online, easier than I thought it would be, it went right through, and I had a nice little refund coming! Cool!

    ... and wouldn't you know, TWO DAYS LATER, I go to the post office and there's a second W2 form from the State retirement system for those three retirement checks! And a few days after that, my refund check was direct deposited in my bank! Now I feel like a criminal! They're coming to get me! Income tax evasion is what they finally got Al Capone on, ya know!

    I'm going to try calling the IRS tomorrow but from past experience, if you can ever get through to a live human being, those people don't know much more about it than I do! I tried looking up amended returns on the IRS website and it takes you to a form to send in that is the most complicated thing I've ever seen! Can't make heads or tails of it! So if you file an amended return, are you basically refiling the whole thing over again and paying any difference if your refund shouldn't have been as much as what you received? Or should I just walk my little self down to our joke of a strip mall and turn myself in at the H&R Block?

    :groan:
     
  2. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    Donna--

    I would definitely do ahead and get a professional in on this one! And make sure that whichever professional you choose will stand by you in the event that the IRS wants to audit you (which they might after receiving this year's return which is so different from what you usually file...)

    Best of luck!
     
  3. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    When I had to do a 1040X I did it online. I knew ahead of time I'd have to, but I wouldn't owe so it wasn't a huge deal to me. If you owe you can pay at their online site, too.
     
  4. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Yes, I have filed an amended return before. It should not be too difficult. It usually lists 2 columns and you put in the original inputs on the left and whatever it changing on the right. Did you print out the form? Does it show 2 columns? I know there was talk of changing that form. Last year we could not electronically file amendments (when I worked at H&R Block), but I do not know if that was just last year or always.
     
  5. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    See, that's what's so confusing! It looks like they still have the last years form and info on the IRS website! It's talking about amending your 2009 tax return! You can fill in the information online but then it says that you have to print it out and mail it in. And there's not two columns - the form doesn't make a bit of sense to me! There's all this stuff about changing the number of dependents or changing your filing status but I can't see anything about having an additional W2. You'd think that would come up fairly often, especially with people who change jobs frequently or have more than one job.
     
  6. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

    Did you use an online site like taxact.com? If so, you can go right back in there and do an amended return.
     
  7. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    I used the Turbo Tax online thing through the IRS site. It started out to be the free version but I ended up having to pay $16 for it because my little bit of 401k money put me over their limit for the free one. Can I do that even if it was already submitted and I already got the refund check?
     
  8. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    Yes, go back to the software you used the first time, there should be an option to amend or file a 1040X.
     
  9. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    It might not be available yet. Sometimes they do not open certain forms for some time. But, yes you should be able to go back through that site. They just might make you print it and send it in instead of e-file it.
     
  10. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    You can also just put the money aside in the bank and wait. In about 6-8 mos the IRS will send you a letter saying that the info they got from W2's doesn't match your return and that they have calculated everything and the difference is $X. You can then either pay it, set up a payment plan or get it refunded if they owe you $$. This has happened to us twice. Once we owed because we didn't know to expect a W2 from something husband's company did (cannot remember it but it was not usual for companies), and once they owed us a bundle. We hadn't claimed enough deductions. When we owed I think the penalty was about $25 total.

    You are NOT going to go to jail over this. It was an honest mistake and millions of tem are made each year.
     
  11. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

    For future reference, taxact.com would have been completely free - for the federal return.
     
  12. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    I did mine on Turbo Tax this year because I did it there last year. I had done it before on the free H&R Block site but I couldn't do it there last year because they all have different age restrictions, income limits, and states they service. I only had to pay to file it this year because my little bit of 401k money put me over the Turbo Tax limit for free filing. I should have tried it on the H&R Block site but by that time it was all finished, it was late at night, and I didn't feel like starting all over again! Two days later I did my sons return on H&R Block. His went right through and he made a lot more money last year than I did!
     
  13. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    After four seasons as a CSR for the IRS, I have several suggestions/points of possible interest.

    First, if you owe money, you have until April 15 (think it's the 18th this year) to pay. No biggie. A 1040X is easy to do; one column for what you put on the original return, one column for the new numbers, and a column for the difference.

    Second, if you must call, don't call on a Monday. It's the busiest day. The phone lines open at 6 am Eastern time, and close at 10 pm Pacific time. Time your call so you're either very early or very late for the least amount of wait time.

    Third, since you're asking about a return you haven't yet filed (the 1040X), it's a tax law question. Different than a regular CSR, who can only tell you about what you've already filed. Which means, if you hit the wrong button, you'll be transferred and get to hear the "Dance of the Elephants," or whatever that Fantasia song is, even longer than before.

    Fourth, if the new info means you're getting more back, you have three years to file and still get a refund.
     
  14. paiprest

    paiprest New Member

    So i had to file a amended tax return and already recieved the checks. Do i have to send them back to the irs. I have not cashed them yet.
     
  15. rlsnights

    rlsnights New Member

    First, given that you were told not to expect the add'l W-2 I would go back to HR and to the pension people and make double sure that there is no duplication here. Or you can go through your bank account and other records and add it all up to see if the totals match.

    If they don't then somebody needs to issue a revised W-2 I think. The HR people should know what needs to happen to fix it.

    As others have said it's usually not too hard to do a 1040X. Here's a link to the form on the IRS website. You can print it out and mail it if you like or you can do the on-line tax programs as others have suggested.

    http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f1040x.pdf

    Best wishes,

    Patricia
     
  16. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    I had to do that a few years back. You just file the amended return and write in BIG HUGE BLACK LETTERS at the top "AMENDED RETURN". The IRS phone line is actually pretty good about helping with these types of questions. You have to sit on hold for a while, but they can get you to the correct forms and addresses, etc.
     
  17. They aren't going to haul you off. However, you can't always trust what the IRS tells you on the phone. Harass your old HR people, although no guarantee they are going to be much help now that you don't work there any more. Some HR people are just plain lame -- yeah, there's a shocker.

    Must be close to 20 years back, I had moved and filed tax stuff for the feds and three states (lived in two, worked in one). The IRS told me something I did wasn't really retirement and I owed them whatever. Filed four amended returns and sent some money. A couple of years later, feds sent me a thing saying what I had done was really OK after all. I decided the extra amount I paid wasn't worth filing another four flipping amended returns so I ate it.

    You make an effort, you'll be OK. You're a little fish. Sometimes, it's good to be a little fish. Good luck!
     
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