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TurboTax Specialist

Which form should I file? 1040A, 1040EZ or 1040?

There are 3 forms you can use to file your federal tax return. The one you choose will depend on your tax situation for that current tax year. Let’s learn a bit about the differences in each of them.


What is 1040EZ?

This form is going to be the simplest of the 3 forms. You will use this one is you are filing as single or filing a joint return with your spouse and you have no dependents or any other income other than earned income credit. More on this form can be seen here What is the IRS 1040EZ Form? You’ll also use this one if your taxable income is less than $100,000. This form uses the standard deduction, so if you have deductions that you need to itemize, this form will not work for your tax situation. The only types of income you are able to include on Form 1040EZ are wages, salaries, tips, taxable interest of $1,500 or less, unemployment compensation and Alaska permanent fund dividends. There are more details here Can I file a 1040EZ? that help you determine if the 1040EZ is best for your situation.


What is 1040A?

This one is a little more complex than the 1040EZ but shorter than the long form 1040. You can use this one if taxable income is still less than $100,000, you received dependent care benefits or if you owe tax from the recapture of an education credit or the alternative minimum tax. You are still not able to itemize deductions on this form, but you can claim adjustments to income for IRA deduction, student loan interest deduction, tuition and fees deduction and the educator expenses deduction. You can find more details on this form here What is the IRS 1040A Form?, and here on the IRS’s website at Which Form – 1040, 1040A, or 1040EZ?


What is 1040 (long-form)?

You will use this form if your taxable income is $100,000 or more and you are itemizing your deductions. You’ll also use this one to report any self-employment income or income you receive from farming or other businesses. And if you owe household employment taxes, you have to use this form. More details on this one can be viewed here What is an IRS 1040 Form?


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Did you know that the form you have been filing all these years depended on your specific tax situation? Or did you not even know there were different ones to file?

1 Comment
Visitor II

Which form should I file? 1040A, 1040EZ or 1040?

okay I have always used the 1040 in prior years due to house interest and tax and insurance and also medical bills this is the fist year that ya'll have said the standard deduction was better I just wanted to make sure this was correct.  please advise

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