Should I file an Amended Tax Return?

Whether you already filed your yearly tax returns on time or perhaps after the tax deadline – there is still a chance that you might receive information that was not included, or you discover something that was missed such as a significant deduction. In this case, you should consider filing an amended tax return.

Should I file an amended tax return if I discover an error or receive new information?

There is no actual requirement to file an amended return and no penalty if the IRS owes you money. Filing is not required even if new information comes to light (such as receiving a revised 1099 or K-1) although in the latter case, the IRS recommends you do amend. Worthless securities and bad debts also may merit an amendment — and taxpayers have up to seven years to go back and claim those losses.

Is it worth the time and costs to amend my return?

Determining if amending your return(s) is worth your time and money vs the reward it can potentially return is something a tax professional such as Torchlight Tax & Accounting in Las Vegas can help you best understand. Our amended tax return specialists in Las Vegas can investigate returns as far back as 3 years to find any errors or missed deductions. We can then calculate if you can expect just a meager increase in your refund or if the increase in your refund is potentially larger. By estimating how much your increase will be ahead of filing the amended return, you can decide if the investment in time and money is worth the increase!

What to consider if you amend your return(s)

Amending Tax returns generally requires more expertise than doing it right the first time. This may seem counter-intuitive, but as a practical rule in doing thousands of tax returns, we have found this to be the case.

We are not, however, legally required to do a full audit of your accounting and tax returns to do an amendment. If something on your tax return was missed, like a large expense for your business, a donation to your church, or a 1099 showing a chunk of un-reported income, we can correct that point without assuming everything else was wrong.

An amended return is more likely to be audited then an original return, and if your amended return results in asking for considerable money back, the IRS may review it even more carefully.

It’s worth noting that amended returns are now eligible for e-file in many cases. This is a recent change. You still may need to paper file an amended return. If paper-filing more than one year, be sure to send each year in a separate envelope.

Also, amended returns should be sent certified. This is especially true after the confusions generated by Covid 19 pandemic and the resulting IRS Office shutdowns. You do not want your amended return sitting in some IRS backlog with no proof that you sent it in. The IRS will generally not believe you if you say you filed a tax return and they do not show it in their system. They do, however, believe you when you send a copy of the return and a certified mail receipt that shows when it was accepted. It is worth four bucks or whatever to send it certified. Be sure to keep the receipt!

Timing an Amended Tax Return

Timing counts when it comes to receiving a refund from amending a tax return and there is a select timeframe available. It’s commonly stated that you must amend within three years of your original return filing. However, the cutoff is three years from the date you filed your original return or two years from the date you paid the tax for the return you wish to amend, whichever is later.

The IRS typically has three years to audit a tax return. Even if you file an amended return, the three-year statute of limitations does not get extended. The amount of time left on the three-year window when you amend can be used to your advantage to assuage the worry of an audit. However, if it shows that you owe more, you will owe additional interest calculated from the due date of the original return (without regard to extensions) and probably penalties as well.

Possible Reasons NOT to Amend

  • It’s important to first ask yourself whether the tax return you filed was accurate to the best of your knowledge when you filed it. If so, it’s an okay bet to decide not to file an amended return.
  • If you simply discover a math error in your calculations, the IRS says there is no need to file an amended return. Their computers or paper-file reviewers will catch the error and correct any amount owed or due to you.
  • If you forgot to attach certain paperwork to your return, such as a W-2, 1099, or schedules to show your work for different areas of the return, the IRS will likely be able to process your return without it or will send you a letter requesting the missing information.

Contact one of the offices of Torchlight Tax and Accounting in the Las Vegas Valley for a free consultation on amending a tax return. We will give you the straight scoop. We will only amend a tax return if it makes sense and benefits you either financially or is legally required to protect you.

Contact Torchlight Tax for a free consultation. This can be done in-person, on-line, or over the phone. Or you can fill in the free consultation form on this website.

Call us at 1-877-758-7797 or 702-463-1818 or email us at We can transfer your call to a branch office near you or help you directly from our central office.

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    Many people do not know how a professional tax and accounting firm differs from a bookkeeper or tax preparer. The main difference when working with a professional tax and accounting firm, such as Torchlight Tax, is that our firm utilizes the services of CPAs, EAs, and Attorneys who are distinguished from bookkeepers and other tax preparers by stringent qualification and licensing requirements. Our entire team has a purpose to legally save your tax dollars and to make taxes as painless as possible. This means we take your calls and respond to your concerns. If you receive a threatening IRS call or Notice or are worried about some tax question, we are here for year round taking your calls and responding to your emails.

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    When doing current taxes, we often come across missed tax savings from prior years. When this happens, the Internal Revenue Service allows you to amend your taxes and lower your tax liability. Whether you or your prior tax preparer missed a W-2 or 1099, a revised 1099. large charitable donations, or made some other error, amending your tax return can help you recover the money you are rightfully owed. When we find this situation, we will advise you on potential savings and amend the previously filed tax return.</p”>

    Sometimes, there may be a situation where a tax return could be amended, but it is too late to receive any benefit. Or maybe you made an error that was missed by the IRS that would have increased your tax liability. In some cases, it is prudent to file an amended return. But if it is not necessary and will not save you any money or decrease your risk, we will tell you not to bother. It is silly to amend a return to no advantage which is too old for the IRS to audit. Some firms might file a bunch of unnecessary tax returns and charge a fee. Sometimes a taxpayer himself might increase his tax liability by filing an unnecessary amendment that increases his tax liability. We will not do this.

    Amending a tax return requires more professional acumen then doing it right in the first place. At Torchlight Tax, we do file the tax return correctly the first time. And we will happily amend your tax return, but only if it actually is to your benefit. If you think you might need to amend tax returns, contact Torchlight Tax for a free consultation.

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