Discussion:Mailing Multiple Year 1040-X

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Discussion Forum Index --> Basic Tax Questions --> Mailing Multiple Year 1040-X


Discussion Forum Index --> Tax Questions --> Mailing Multiple Year 1040-X

Barbie (talk|edits) said:

18 October 2013
I have amended two years returns and am telling clients to mail them certified, etc. My question is: Can both years be sent in the same envelope? Long ago I seem to remember being "trained" by the CPA that I was working for not to send multiple returns at the same time ie: leave a month or so between mailings. Don't remember the logic. Any input as to why clients should not put both returns, (amended to correct the same problem - capital loss carryforward) into the same envelope to mail?

Michaelstar (talk|edits) said:

18 October 2013
Real easy for $10 an hour types to play employee for a day and not really look at what they are processing - toss one (it must be a duplicate) and process the other.

Make it simple for them - send one at a time and give the "system" time to process the first one - then send the other - I'd give it six weeks - they are currently on vacation remember. They will come back and have a week of stories to talk about how nice their two week paid vacation was............that we paid for!

Barbie (talk|edits) said:

18 October 2013
Thank you for your response. Seems nothing changed over the last 20 years . . . And the paid vacation probably made folks lazier than ever!

Ckenefick (talk|edits) said:

18 October 2013
Don't remember the logic.

Logic #1 is as Michaelstar says. Logic #2 is in the case of a non-filer, to avoid an outright exhibition of a clear pattern of non-compliance.

RexT2013 (talk|edits) said:

18 October 2013
IRS return processors don't "toss one" because it looks like a duplicate. Rather, the problem of sending two years' returns in the same envelope is that they may get stapled together and the one on top is the return that's processed (the other doesn't get processed). Sending in separate envelopes solves this problem. Has nothing to do with sending returns in at different times.

Ckenefick (talk|edits) said:

18 October 2013
Has nothing to do with sending returns in at different times.

Right, in OP's case. I think OP was having a hard time recalling the logic of separate mailings...and, in the non-filer context, we have batted around the practice of (1) separate envelopes (2) mailed at separate times (3) from separate locations.

Podolin (talk|edits) said:

18 October 2013
"Batted around" phrase needs to be replaced by "kicked around" not later than end of World Series.

Ckenefick (talk|edits) said:

18 October 2013
What do we use when World Cup arrives?

David1980 (talk|edits) said:

18 October 2013
On the subject of certified mail, I was at a seminar where a tax attorney type fellow argued that certified mail is not useful for proving a return is filed. If the return does not get processed, you would have proof that you sent something to the IRS, but what exactly? Seems that would be even more true if you mailed two returns in one envelope. I've been fortunate to never have any problems with the IRS processing something mailed to them. Is there any truth to this tax attorney's advice on certified mail?

His recommendation was to send a check with each return, for different amounts. So you might send a check for $5 with one year's return and a check for $6 with a different year's return. Indicate the tax year in the memo. The IRS would process the payments and then having the payment for 20XX tax year combined with your certified mail receipt would give you better proof of filing.

Not sure this is really a good idea or just one of those "it sounds good and I'm getting paid to speak" things.

Ckenefick (talk|edits) said:

18 October 2013
I was at a seminar where a tax attorney type fellow argued that certified mail is not useful for proving a return is filed. If the return does not get processed, you would have proof that you sent something to the IRS, but what exactly?

The tax attorney type fellow obviously hasn't read 301.7502-1, as all of us most assuredly have.

His recommendation was to send a check with each return, for different amounts. So you might send a check for $5 with one year's return and a check for $6 with a different year's return. Indicate the tax year in the memo. The IRS would process the payments and then having the payment for 20XX tax year combined with your certified mail receipt would give you better proof of filing.

Would it, really? Or, would it only conclusively prove that your mailing included a check for $5 and perhaps nothing else? And maybe, it might not even prove that if you think about. Might be, guy sent one envelope (certified, return receipt) on 10/15. Then, on 10/16 (one day after the deadline), he sends another envelope via first class mail. One of those envelopes contained a $5 check. And, this check cleared the bank. How do we know which envelope (the timely one or the late one) included the $5 check? Well, there is really no way to tell, technically. Some might say that this little trick provides greater evidence as to a timely filing, but I'm not convinced.

FYI - This is not a new idea, but most of us would say that $5 is too much and would prefer to send in $1.

EADave (talk|edits) said:

20 October 2013
Chris is correct, just this time!  :)

Once the envelope is proven to be mailed timely/received timely by the IRS via the Certified Mailing receipt, the burden of proof shifts to the IRS to prove there was nothing in the envelope (or the return was never included in the envelope).

The Tax Attorney was probably being cautious but his circular reasoning would drive a taxpayer and tax preparer batty!

RexT2013 (talk|edits) said:

20 October 2013
"the burden of proof shifts to the IRS to prove there was nothing in the envelope"

How did you reach this conclusion?

I no longer use the green return receipt card because the USPS produces a tracking report that you can get online, showing when the envelope was delivered. That leaves the 1/8" high label with the tracking number on it available for another use, so I stick this label on the first page of whatever I'm sending. I scan that page and the envelope with the certified mail sticker on it. That gives me proof that this was the document in the envelope, or at least it creates a presumption that the IRS has to disprove.

Smokeytax (talk|edits) said:

20 October 2013
RexT2013 - that's a great idea. Thanks!

Szptax (talk|edits) said:

20 October 2013
I have sometimes asked for the return green card, sometimes not. It depended on the importance of the mailing and my general mood that day. I have always put the rr# on the document, sometimes on every page if I felt the correspondence & attachment called for it. I also included a cover letter with the number of pages enclosed & general detail. Really it depends on the issue. I have dealt with some who I wouldn't trust and others that I would. Either way - trust but verify.

EADave (talk|edits) said:

21 October 2013
RexT2013- How did you reach this conclusion?

From 301.7502-1(e)(2)(i)

2) Exceptions to actual delivery— (i) Registered and certified mail. In the case of a document (but not a payment) sent by registered or certified mail, proof that the document was properly registered or that a postmarked certified mail sender's receipt was properly issued and that the envelope was properly addressed to the agency, officer, or office constitutes prima facie evidence that the document was delivered to the agency, officer, or office.

And from the word on the street, as I've been told this by a number of highly qualified tax problem resolution experts. But if they and I are wrong, please explain. I'm here to learn, not to flaunt what little I know.

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