No one likes doing their taxes, and they certainly don’t want to do them more than once. But if it comes to your attention that you made an error on your paperwork (or worse, missed an important credit), filing an amended return could be to your benefit. Read on for the top 5 reasons to amend and learn how you might be able to save thousands of dollars.
You received more information after you filed
For various reasons, people sometimes receive additional tax information after they’ve already filed. Whether it’s 1099 income you forgot to report or a 401(k) distribution you didn’t mention, you’ll want to file an amended return. It won’t earn you any extra money in your return, but it may save you hefty fees down the road.
You made energy-efficient home improvements
News flash: solar panels aren’t the only thing that qualify you for an energy-efficient tax credit. If you added new insulation, exterior doors or windows, or even an updated central air system, you may be owed some money. You can file Form 5696 along with the 1040X to claim this credit.
You’re owed a tax credit for childcare or summer camp
Child care is a frequently overlooked tax break. But if you have a child under the age of 13 and you had to pay for daycare or summer camp so you could work (or look for work), you qualify for a credit–and it can be worth a lot. If you have one child, you can qualify for up to $1,050, or up to $2,100 for two or more.
You overlooked your charitable deductions
It’s hard to forget big charitable deductions, like that $5,000 per head gala you attended for the local hospital, but the little stuff counts, too. For example, if you donated bags of old clothes to the Vietnam Vets, or you bought groceries for your son’s school’s Thanksgiving food drive, those are things you can write off.
You missed taking the tuition and fees deduction
This is a difficult one to forget (because, let’s face it, tuition is a lot of money spent), but tax law changes in 2017 made it confusing for many people. If you filed your taxes before that deduction was extended, it’s not too late to take it now. And it’s worth it–this deduction can reduce your taxable income by up to $4,000.