Form 15103 (Form 1040 Return Delinquency)

Form 15103

What to Expect If You Receive Form 15103 or IRS Ask You to Complete

If the IRS believes that you haven't filed your tax returns, the agency may send you Form 15103 (Form 1040 Return Delinquency). The IRS usually sends this form with Notice CP56, CP59, or CP516, but you may receive it with another notice. The right response depends on your situation. Take a look at your options. 

What to Do If You Receive Form 15103 or IRS Asks You to Complete

If you receive Form 15103, you can get back into compliance by filing your returns immediately. But you may want to consult with a tax professional to ensure you file correctly and to reduce your penalties as much as possible. 

Alternatively, you can use Form 15103 to explain why you don't need to file or to give the IRS other details about the situation. The exact instructions for Form 15103 vary based on your situation — keep reading to learn more. 

How to Fill Out Form 15103 Questionnaire If You Already Filed

You could ignore the Form 15103 questionnaire if you filed your return in the last eight weeks. The IRS sent notice before receiving your return. You may want to follow up to make sure the agency received your return. You can use the IRS app or its Where's My Refund tool to check your refund status. 

If you filed more than eight weeks ago, you should attach a copy of the return to Form 15103. Then, tick the box saying you filed the return and fill in the year. Also, include the name on the return, the filed forms, the year, and the tax return date. Make sure that the name on Form 15103 matches the name on your tax return. 

What If the Person Listed on Form 15103 Is Deceased

In the case of a deceased taxpayer, you should note their date of death. Then, tick the box if you have already filed Form 1041 (Income Tax Return for Estates and Trusts). If so, note the name shown on the return, the EIN used on the return and the tax return year. 

Note that you only have to file this return if the deceased person's estate earned more than $600 in income. For instance, if the deceased person's estate received rent from an investment property or gains on a bond, this form may be required. Generally, you file a deceased person's final return in the same way as when they were alive, but you note their date of death on the return. 

How to Fill Out Form 15103 If You Don't Need to File

There is a spot on Form 15103 where you can note that you do not need to file. On this part of the form, you should note the tax year, your filing status, and your income. Then, select if any of the following situations apply: you or your spouse are over age 65, you or your spouse are blind, you're not a US citizen or permanent resident, you worked in another country, or you were claimed as a dependent on someone else's return.

Then, write out your reason for not filing. For instance, if your income was under the standard threshold, you would write something like, "I did not file because in the tax year 2020, my income was less than the standard deduction for my filing status." Or, if you didn't file because you are not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, you would write out that reason. 

What If You Disagree With the Notice

If you disagree with the notices you received with Form 15103, you can contact the IRS directly. Call the phone number on your notice or hire a tax professional to contact the IRS for you. You can also use Form 15103 to explain why you disagree, as explained above. 

How to Submit Form 15103

Mail Form 15103 questionnaire to the address provided on the envelope you receive with your notice. Or fax the form to the number provided on the notice. 

How to File Delinquent Tax Returns

If you've received Form 15103 because you haven't filed your returns, you may want to get professional help filing your back taxes. Of course, you can also file them yourself. Here are some tips to help you:

  • Gather all of your wage and income documents for unfiled years.
  • If you're missing documents, reach out to the entity that issued them — for example, ask your bank if you can get a copy of your interest statements.
  • Request a wage and income transcript from the IRS to see your W2 and 1099 information from various tax years. 
  • Make sure you use the tax form from the delinquent year — income tax forms change from year to year. 
  • Remember that you will owe penalties and interest on top of the tax due amount shown on the tax return. 
  • But if you have a refund, the IRS will pay you interest — note that you only have three years after the original due date to claim a refund. 
  • Once you file, apply for penalty abatement — the IRS is often willing to remove or reduce penalties, especially if this is your first offense and you had a reasonable cause for not filing. 

What If You Can't Afford to Pay Your Taxes?

People have all kinds of reasons for getting behind on their tax returns. Sometimes, life just gets in the way of paperwork. In other cases, you may be worried that you don't have enough money to pay. If you don't have enough money to pay, you should still file your return. 

Once your return has been filed, you can take care of your taxes using one of the following options:

You can apply for these programs on your own or you can consult with a tax professional to identify the best option for your situation. 

Get Help With Form 15103

If you need help or have questions about Form 15103, contact a tax professional in your area. Tax attorneys, CPAs, and enrolled agents can help you file back taxes, respond to Form 15103 and negotiate with the IRS. To learn more, contact a local tax pro today.