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I'm filing by mail because every time I have tried to file electronically over the past several years, I got error messages asking for information I did not have. I'm sending the following:

1040
Schedule A
Schedule B
Schedule D
Forms 8949

Is Schedule 3 a requirement? Is anything else required? We have no businesses, no royalties, no K-1s and no interest in an alpaca farm. Just wages, Social Security, dividends, interest and cap gains.

--fleg
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Be glad you do not have to file form 8938.

For me, it is 3 pages long. And it makes no difference to your taxes. But if you are required to file, and fail to file, there is a $10,000 fine.
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I'm filing by mail because every time I have tried to file electronically over the past several years, I got error messages asking for information I did not have.

What type of information was it requesting? And was it an error message that did not allow you to electronically file, or was it a warning that you may need to input some other information, if it's available?

Is Schedule 3 a requirement? Is anything else required? We have no businesses, no royalties, no K-1s and no interest in an alpaca farm. Just wages, Social Security, dividends, interest and cap gains.

Did you pay taxes to any foreign country on the dividends, interest or cap gains you received? If so, you'll probably want to file Schedule 3 to get the foreign tax credit. If the foreign taxes you paid are more than $300, you'll also need to file a Form 1116.

If you made any estimated payments or used ACA insurance, you'll also need to file Schedule 3. There are other reasons that Schedule 3 is needed, like if you qualify for energy tax credit for making efficiency upgrades to your home, but you didn't mention anything like that, so I'll assume that you don't qualify for that.

As far as any other schedules or forms, I will ask if you are using a tax program to file by mail, or are you using the IRS forms from the website? If you're using a tax program, but printing out the forms and filing by mail, then the tax program should let you know. If you're using the forms on the IRS website, then we would need to see your actual information to suggest what you might be missing. I would strongly suggest using a tax program, even if you're filing by mail.

AJ
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What type of information was it requesting? And was it an error message that did not allow you to electronically file, or was it a warning that you may need to input some other information, if it's available?

It was some years ago and I don't remember. After it happened a number of consecutive years, I just gave up and filed by mail without trying to e-file. But today I e-filed my 2019 return and it was accepted without question. Maybe TurboTax has gotten better at that.

--fleg, who did not file his state tax electronically b/c TT wanted $25 to do it
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--fleg, who did not file his state tax electronically b/c TT wanted $25 to do it


It won't help this year, but Amazon added a version for 2019 taxes that included a state electronic return, I believe at the same price of previous Fed-only versions. Just a heads-up to look at Amazon options in the future.

I have a significant long position in Amazon stock, so beware! ;-)
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My state tax refund was only $14, so I just printed it out and mailed it for $6 (certified mail). I'll only net $8 when the refund comes, but at least I won't be out $11 by filing electronically.

Fuskie
Who notes Intuit has conducted surveys as to whether customers would prefer paying a higher price for the TurboTax product in exchange for free state filing or a lower price for the product in exchange for paid state filing, and the results always come back preferring the lower product price...

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My state tax refund was only $14, so I just printed it out and mailed it for $6 (certified mail). I'll only net $8 when the refund comes, but at least I won't be out $11 by filing electronically.

Are there penalties in your state if you are due a refund? I am due a small state tax refund. I just put a first class stamp on my return envelope.

PSU
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and the results always come back preferring the lower product price...

Now, for a real lower priced product,,
https://www.freetaxusa.com/

George
Disclosure: Satisfied user only
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My state tax refund was only $14, so I just printed it out and mailed it for $6 (certified mail). I'll only net $8 when the refund comes, but at least I won't be out $11 by filing electronically.

My federal refund was quite a bit, so I could have had them direct deposit it to my bank account. But since I must normally file estimated tax, I had them use it to make my first three estimated tax payments.

I cannot remember if have that choice with my state; I have them making direct deposit to my bank. For $14, that is what I would do.

I used TaxAct to file. One state filing was "free."
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