Filing The 1040Ez Federal Tax Form

As many of us know only too well, earning income in the United States means participating in the annual ritual of filing a federal income tax return. This event ranges from relatively painless to excruciating. If you are one of those who qualify to file form 1040EZ, you have the good fortune of being on the painless end of that scale.

Individual taxpayers file one of three federal income tax forms: 1040, 1040A, or 1040EZ. Anyone can file a tax form 1040. Restrictions apply to the others. Tax form 1040A is limited to taxpayers with taxable income below $50,000 who do not itemize their deductions. Additionally, income sources, adjustments, tax sources, and credits are limited to a short list. The qualifications for filing tax form 1040EZ are even more limiting. You may file tax form 1040EZ if all of the following apply:

1. Your filing status is single or married filing jointly.

2. You have no dependents or other exemptions aside from you and your spouse.

3. Your taxable income is below $50,000 and your taxable interest income is $400 or less.

4. You do not itemize your deductions.

5. There are no adjustments to your income (such as an IRA deduction or alimony).

6. You have no taxes other than the tax from the IRS tax tables AND

7. You have no tax credits or only the earned income tax credit.

If you scored a "yes" on each of these seven points, the IRS allows you to file tax form 1040EZ. This form is a straightforward (for the IRS anyway) six section form. If you have not gotten the form in the mail, you can pick one up from your local post office or library. You can also download a form from the IRS web site.

The heading is where you stick your IRS mailing label if you received your form in the mail or fill in your name and address if you did not receive your form in the mail. You must also fill in you and your spouse's social security numbers to the left of your name(s) and address. Under the address and social security numbers, you and your spouse have the option of contributing $3 each to the Presidential Election Campaign. Check "yes" or "no" according to your inclinations.

Lines one through six are used to figure your taxable income. Round each number to the nearest whole dollar throughout the form. Round amounts containing 49Вў or less down and those with 50Вў and higher up (For example $12.40 becomes $12.00 and $25,872.79 becomes $25,873). Going down 1040EZ, write in your income from forms W-2 (line 1), taxable interest from forms 1099-Int (line 2), and any unemployment compensation (line 3). Lines 1 through 3 added together are your adjusted gross income (line 4). To find your taxable income (line 6), you subtract your standard deduction (line 5) from adjusted gross income (line 4). The standard deduction amount is printed on 1040EZ.

Payments and Tax

In this section you will record the taxes you have already paid throughout the year as well as the tax you owe based on your taxable income. Write in line 7 the amount of the federal income tax withheld during the year from box 2 of your W-2(s). Line 8 is a tax credit (considered a payment by the IRS) you get if you have adjusted gross income of less than $10,200 as well as some other qualifications. If you think you may qualify, research the Earned Income Credit (EIC) to determine your eligibility and the amount to include on line 8. Lines 7 and 8 together make-up your total tax payments (line 9). To complete line 10, you must look up a number in the IRS tax tables. If you did not receive a mailing from the IRS you can pick up a copy of the tax table where you obtained the form 1040EZ. In the tax tables find the row in the left-hand columns that includes your taxable income from line 6. Carefully follow that row over to the appropriate Single or Married Filing Jointly column. The figure printed there in the table is your tax. Write this figure on line 10 of the 1040EZ.

Lines 9 and 10 together determine if you will receive a refund or if you owe more taxes to the IRS.

If line 9 is more than line 10 you paid too many taxes and are entitled to a refund. Fill in line 11a with the amount of your refund (line 9 minus line 10). Complete lines 11b and 11c if you want your refund deposited directly into your banking account.

If line 9 is less than line 10 you did not pay enough taxes and must send a check in with your income tax return. Fill in ine 12 with the amount of your payment (line 10 minus line 9).

The IRS will reject your return if it is not signed. Remember to sign, date, and indicate your occupation in the appropriate spaces at the bottom of 1040EZ.

Once your form 1040EZ is completed and you have checked over your work, make a copy for you records and keep it in a safe place. The IRS requires that you then file your form by April 15 or the next business day if the 15th falls on a weekend. You can file by mailing your return to the appropriate IRS address (the address varies, depending upon where you live) or by filing electronically (for an extra fee).

What is the 1040EZ - 1040EZ Form Explained

Who files 1040ez

What is the 1040EZ? The 1040EZ form (aka the EZ form) is the simplest and shortest form you can use to file your federal income taxes. Each year over 20 million people file this form, around 1 in every 6.5 federal tax returns filed. This article explains who can use it, the information required to fill it out, and options for filing it with the IRS.

If you make less than $100K per year, don’t have any dependents, and don’t have a mortgage, then you’re probably eligible to file the 1040EZ. It covers salary and wages from your job (W-2), interest from your bank account (1099-INT), and unemployment income (1099-G). If you're an independent contractor (1099-MISC), have dividend income (1099-DIV), or investment income (1099-B), then you're not eligible to file a 1040EZ.

There are four main sections of the form. Personal information, income you made, taxes you already paid, and your tax refund or balance due.

Just the facts, ma'am. Name, address, date of birth and social security number. Easy breezy. If you're married, you enter the same information for your spouse. Since you can't claim dependents with the 1040EZ, there is no place to record their information. If you're over age 65, you can't file the EZ form unfortunately.

As noted earlier, the 1040EZ covers the most common types of income - wages, salaries, and tips from your employer (reported on Form W-2), interest income from banks and other financial institutions (reported on Form 1099-INT), and unemployment income (reported on Form 1099-G). If you received any of these types of income, these forms will be sent to you by the end of January. For more information about the timing of Tax Year 2014 (filed in 2015), read this article.

Each of the forms you receive will report the taxes you've already paid, or had withheld. Typically taxes are withheld from each paycheck you receive, so your W-2 will list the total amount of tax you've already paid via your job in box 2. It is unusual to have taxes withheld from bank interest or unemployment income, but if they were they will be reported on the 1099-INT or 1099-G you receive.

This is the best part! Most people get a refund, and this is especially true for 1040EZ filers. Your refund or balance due is the calculated by comparing the amount of tax you've already paid vs. what you actually owe. If you're eligible for the earned income credit, it will increase your refund.

You have 3 options for filing your taxes.

The old school way to do your taxes is with pencil and paper. It takes a while and a little math, but you can’t beat the price (it’s free). Download the form from the IRS, grab a calculator, and read the 42 pages of instructions. Wait, never mind. Research shows it takes over 3 and half hours on average to do it by hand.

Pay someone else to do it for you

You can hire a CPA or go to a tax store and pay someone to do it for you. It’s certainly less effort on your part, but you have to pay for it. Around $100, if not more.

Do It Yourself With Your Phone or Computer

There are lots of mobile, online, and software options, many of them quite good. We believe Common Form is the best option for 1040EZ filers and hope you'll give us the chance to earn your business. If you know you're not eligible to file a 1040EZ, we recommend TaxAct. They handle just about any tax situation you can think of.

Instructions for filing 1040ez 2016

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Who files 1040ez

E-File your 1040 EZ Tax form for free online

Some options let you file both federal and state forms at no cost

IRS Free File is now officially open, enabling some 70 percent of Americans to begin preparing their federal tax returns online for free. The IRS will begin accepting mailed and e-filed returns on Tuesday, January 20th.

If you want guidance when preparing your federal tax form and your household’s 2014 adjusted gross income was $60,000 or less, you can prepare and file your federal return for free on your computer through IRS Free File. To participate, you must file through a company listed as an "e-file partner" in the Free File section of the IRS website.

Before going to IRS Free File, though, check the website of the taxing authority in your state to see how to qualify for free preparation and filing of your state income tax return. You may have to start there first to prepare e-file everything for free. In New York State, for instance, eligible taxpayers must start at the state’s free filing web page to be linked to the appropriate software, which then handles both state and federal returns for no cost.

See our Income Tax Guide for more advice and tips on preparing, filing and saving on your income tax return.

Free federal and state prep and e-file for some

If your state doesn't offer free e-file, you may find better choices this year outside of Free File.

This year, for instance, TurboTax's Federal Free Edition is offering it free, guided online tax prep service and e-filing for both federal and state returns, regardless of your income. To qualify, though, you must use IRS Forms 1040EZ or 1040A. The free service will import W-2 and 1099 information from participating employers and financial institutions. For other services, including transferring your data from a prior return prepared using TurboTax, you'll have to upgrade to one of its other versions.

TaxSlayer, another player, offers a free federal and state version for all active duty members of the military. It says its military version supports "all major forms and schedules," including the IRS Form 1040, the "long form."

Smart-phone savvy taxpayers can prepare and e-file both state and federal returns for free on their iPhones and Androids with TaxACT Express. The service covers Form 1040A and 1040EZ, and well as simple versions of Form 1040; however, it appears that the only IRS schedule supported is Schedule EIC for the earned-income tax credit. (TaxACT warns that if you switch over to a browser or tablet app to finish and e-file your form, you're subject to TaxACT's online pricing.)

H&R Block also offers free preparation and filing of basic IRS forms, including Form 1040A and 1040EZ. Like TurboTax, the service will automatically import info from your W-2. Block's state return is available for $9.99 for folks who e-file through February 15th. Block's website says its free edition also offers free, "live, personal tax advice with a tax professional" via chat and phone, and "in-person audit support."

Block is also offering to give customers using its free online edition a bonus. For every $100 of their refund that they load onto a participating retailer's gift card, Block will add 5 percent. (It adds 10 percent if you upgrade to another Block product.) TurboTax has a similar offer through, but not for its free online edition.

If you're not active-duty military, you can still prepare and e-file the simplest, Form 1040EZ for free with TaxSlayer. You can do the same with e-Smart Tax. Both require extra for state prep and e-filing; e-Smart Tax's state form costs a competitive, $9.95.

What's free if you don't qualify for Free File and file a regular 1040?

If your household adjusted gross income is above $60,000 and you need to prepare and e-file a regular Form 1040 and accompanying schedules, check out TaxACT. It offers the widest array of IRS forms and schedules that can be prepared and filed for free. Preparing and e-filing state tax forms on a browser (as opposed to via smart phone) costs $9.99.

If you don't need help filling out your forms, the IRS now offers free, "fillable9quot; electronic versions of Forms 1040, 1040A, and 1040EZ to all taxpayers, regardless of income. They are available through the Free File section of the IRS website.