Who Can File a Form 1040A?

By | February 23, 2014

Form 1040A is used by certain people to file taxes. Form 1040A is not as complex as Form 1040, but is longer than 1040EZ. Form 1040A allows you to claim a number of deductions that you are not able to on 1040EZ.


Who Can File a Form 1040A?

Individuals can file this form who have varied incomes and would like to take various deductions can file this tax form. While all the personal income tax forms — 1040, 1040A and 1040EZ — are designed to get the appropriate amount of your money to the Internal Revenue Service, the differences in these returns could cost you if you’re not paying attention. To file a 1040A, if you don’t meet requirements for Form 1040EZ, but have a simple tax situation, you could have an option to file this form.


Requirements for Filing 1040A Tax Form

To be eligible for filing a 1040A, a taxpayer must meet certain requirements:

  1. Only have income only from wages, salaries, tips, taxable scholarships, fellowship grants, pensions or annuities, taxable Social Security benefits, withdrawals from your individual retirement account (IRA), unemployment compensation, jury duty pay, interest, and dividends.
  2. Taxable income after deductions (line 27, page 2) is less than $100,000.
  3. No Itemizing of any deductions.

If all these requirements are met, a taxpayer can file a 1040A. It would be in the taxpayers best interest to also check if they can file a 1040EZ. It is possible to file form 1040 and still claim the earned income tax credit.The only adjustments to income you can claim are the IRA deduction and the student-loan interest deduction — and you can also claim educator expenses and the tuition and fees deduction.

The only credits you can claim on the Form 1040A are:

  • Child tax credit
  • Additional child tax credit
  • Education credits
  • Earned Income Credit (EIC)
  • Credit for child and dependent-care expenses
  • Credit for the elderly or the disabled
  • Retirement savings contributions credit

You can also use a 1040A if you receive dependent-care benefits or owe tax from the recapture of an education credit or the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT).


Form 1040EZ and Form 1040A Filers

For 1040EZ and 1040A filers who dod not compute their tax liability, you can let the IRS compute your tax after you enter your basic information on the tax forms. If after entering your information, you’re entitled to a refund, the IRS will send you a check. If you owe money on taxes for any reason, the IRS will send you a bill.


Completing Schedule EIC

For the earned income tax credit,  whether a taxpayer is filing a Form 1040A or a Form 1040, they need to complete Schedule EIC and attach it form to the tax return in order to get the credit. Remember to accurately compute the EITC because the IRS has lots of audit focus on this area and the penalties for mis-filing an EIC can have consequences for up to 10 years for a a taxpayer.

The process to file a 1040A electronically is exactly the same as for a 1040EZ. You can mail or e-file this return by using the appropriate. Here is IRS Information about Form 1040A and more filing instructions.


Filing Form 1040

Form 1040 is the most complex of the 3 major individual tax forms — and it offers tax breaks that aren’t available on the simpler Form 1040EZ or Form 1040A. You can report all types of income, expenses, and credits on a 1040. If you were a nonresident alien during the tax year and you were married to a U.S. citizen or resident alien, you may use any one of these three forms, based on your circumstances, only if you elect to file a joint return with your spouse. Other nonresident aliens may have to file Form 1040NR (PDF) or Form 1040NR-EZ (PDF). For more information on resident and nonresident aliens, refer to Topic 851 and Publication 519, U.S. Tax Guide for Aliens.


More Information about 2015 and 2016 Earned Income Tax credit (2015 EIC)