Federal Income Tax Forms: 1040EZ Instructions

If you qualify, you can use the simplest form for filing your tax returns.
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The Internal Revenue Service has several forms you can use to file your tax returns. Taxpayers who are married filing jointly with no dependents or single filers who meet the age, income, payments, credits and tax requirements can use form 1040EZ to file taxes.

Age and Health Condition

Married couples or single filers must be under age 65 at the end of the tax year to use the 1040EZ form. Taxpayers who meet the conditions for being considered blind cannot use the 1040EZ form.


If your taxable income, not your adjusted gross income, is less than $100,000, you can use 1040EZ. Your taxable income is found on line 6. After entering your W-2 wages, taxable interest under $1,500 and unemployment compensation, you total your income on line 4, which is your adjusted gross income. Subtract your standard deduction to find your taxable income. If you have other income such as self-employment income, you cannot use this form.

Payments, Credits and Tax

If you are using 1040EZ, you can claim the earned income credit and nontaxable combat pay under payments, credits and tax. You also enter any federal tax withholding that you had taken from your wages or accumulated interest. After you have entered the required information, you will have a total for your payments and credits. Your tax liability is found using your taxable income from line 6. If you have other credits or payments such as interest on student loans or educator expenses, you cannot use 1040EZ.

Refund or Owe

After completing the income, payments, credits and tax sections, you will find your refund amount or amount you owe to the IRS. If you have a refund coming to you, you can choose to have the money deposited into your checking account by supplying your bank routing number and account number. If you owe money, you should send the money along with your 1040EZ tax return by April 15 to avoid penalties and interest being added to the balance owed.

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