IRS News Release  
March 22, 1989

Short Forms for Form 1040 Users

Over four million taxpayers who filed Form 1040 last year received Form 1040A and 1040EZ tax packages this year instead. They received these "short forms" as part of an Internal Revenue Service effort to offer people the chance to file the simplest return possible that fits their tax situation.

The IRS tries to tailor the tax package mail-out to the needs of the individual taxpayer and generally sends the appropriate tax package based on the form and schedules the taxpayer filed the year before. This year the IRS identified 4.3 million filers of Form 1040 for 1987 who could have filed one of the simpler forms. So this year the IRS sent them a Form 1040A/EZ tax package instead.

Many taxpayers seem to be shifting to Forms 1040A and 1040EZ; IRS statistics show that receipts are up 6.8 percent for Form 1040A and 6.2 percent for Form 1040EZ over last year. Through March 17 the IRS received over 11.5 million Forms 1040A and 12.3 million Forms 1040EZ.

Overall the IRS has received 48.4 million individual income tax returns so far this year. This is a 1.7 percent increase over last year, a pace that has been maintained during the last several weeks. The IRS has received 24.5 million Forms 1040 through March 17, a 2.6 percent drop in receipts of this form compared to last year.

Taxpayers, of course, should take advantage of all the adjustments, deductions and credits they are entitled to, so if the forms package sent by the IRS does not suit your needs, get the appropriate tax package by calling the IRS toll-free forms order number, 1-800-424-FORM (3676). The hours of operation during the filing season are 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., Monday through Friday and 9:00 to 3:00 Saturdays.

Processing of returns continues at a good pace. The IRS processed over 36 million returns as of March 17, a four-percent increase over the previous year. Refund returns continue to be processed within three weeks of receipt, and taxpayers can still expect refunds within four to six weeks. Of course, that period will lengthen as the filing period nears an end and returns begin to come in to the service centers in greater numbers. As of March 17 the IRS certified 25.3 million refunds; the average refund is $817.60, compared to $808.89 last year.

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