What are the differences between form 1040, 1040a, and 1040ez? This is a really good question. Basically, all three forms are alternative options for your basic individual income tax return. The form you need to file or are allowed to file will depend on the complexities of your tax return. If you itemize deductions or have capital gains or losses attached to your tax return, you will probably have to fill out the long form (1040). Even though it's not officially called the "long form," the 1040 is the lengthier of the three forms. However, if you still have some complexities but not as many, you can use the 1040a. On the other hand, if you only have a W-2 and regular income with withholding, and your tax return is not complicated, you should consider using the 1040ez. The "ez" in the name stands for easy, although most people wouldn't say any tax form is truly easy. The IRS website and Mahalo.com have forms available for you to check which one fits your circumstances best. These three forms are all alternatives for your first individual tax return that you have to fill out. Overall, this is a really good question.
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1040a vs 1040 Form: What You Should Know
How Do IRS Forms 1040 and 1040EZ Compare in Detail? In 2014, the IRS amended Form 1040A to remove a variety of qualifying expenditures, reducing the amount of qualifying expenses an individual can deduct on his or her income tax return. The Form 1040EZ, however, has no changes to the items it contains, which will enable users to file an amended return. Here's a breakdown of some differences between the two versions of Form 1040: Form 1040A Taxable Income The Form 1040A is the more detailed but also more time-consuming version of the form. The IRS requires that you use Form 1040A for everything, including medical/dental expenses, student loan interest and taxes paid to a state or local government. Form 1040EZ Expenses The Form 1040EZ does not deduct expenses incurred after your tax year begins, such as state or local income tax, business taxes, home taxes, or mortgage payments if you purchased your home or your main residence after 2015. Those expenses are considered qualified expenses, and they are usually deductible on Schedule A, Itemized Deductions and Exclusion from Income (Form 1040-EZ). Interest The Form 1040EZ includes interest on loans as qualifying interest. If you took out a loan to pay down student loans, Form 1040EZ qualifies. It doesn't cover interest on a credit card where you paid off the original loan. So, if you took out a loan to pay down your student loans, you would have the maximum allowable amount of interest that you can deduct on Form 1040EZ, because the interest wasn't charged to your credit card. The IRS has been trying to crack down on this over the years. Taxes Paid to a State or Local Government You can deduct your property taxes paid to the state or local government as qualified expenditures on Schedule A. This may be the one drawback of using Form 1040EZ vs. Form 1040. Property taxes paid to your local school district or the local government may not have the same exclusions and deductions available on the federal version of the form, so you might be able to deduct that payment, too. Federal and State Income Tax If you are filing a joint return, and you itemize on Schedule A, you can claim deductions and credits related to state and local taxes paid by you and your spouse under the federal standard deduction limits.
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