Tax Return

Loading the player...

What is 'Tax Return'

1. The tax form or forms used to file income taxes with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Tax returns often are set up in a worksheet format, where the income figures used to calculate the tax liability are written into the documents themselves. Tax returns must be filed every year for an individual or business that received income during the year, whether through regular income (wages), interest, dividends, capital gains, or other profits.

2. A return of excess taxes paid during a given tax year; this is more accurately known as a "tax refund".

BREAKING DOWN 'Tax Return'

Individuals use Form 1040, corporations use Form 1120 and partnerships use Form 1065. Investment income is recorded on Form 1099. Most large corporations and sole proprietors file tax returns quarterly, rather than just once per year. This keeps the tax balance running as close to $0 as possible and avoids oversized tax bills at the end of the year.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Income Tax

    A tax that governments impose on financial income generated by ...
  2. Effective Tax Rate

    The average rate at which an individual or corporation is taxed. ...
  3. Tax Rate

    The percentage at which an individual or corporation is taxed. ...
  4. IRS Publication 17

    A document published by the Internal Revenue Service that outlines ...
  5. Tax Year

    The period of time which is covered by a particular tax return. ...
  6. IRS Publication 514

    A document published by the Internal Revenue Service that provides ...
Related Articles
  1. Savings

    Explaining Tax Returns

    A tax return is the form or forms used to file income taxes with the IRS.
  2. Taxes

    What's IRS Form 1040 For?

    Most U.S. taxpayers will be familiar with the 1040. By the end of filling it out, you'll know how much tax you owe, or what your refund is.
  3. Professionals

    Types Of Taxes

    These taxes are unavoidable for corporations.
  4. Taxes

    Next Season, File Taxes On Your Own

    Master these fundamentals and you'll be doing your own taxes with minimal stress.
  5. Taxes

    Confused About Estimated Tax Deadlines for 2016?

    If you run a business or have investment income, pay attention to this year's estimated tax deadlines. Here are the details, and what's new for 2016.
  6. Taxes

    Understanding Income Tax

    Income tax is a levy many governments place on revenue of entities within their jurisdiction.
  7. Taxes

    3 Federal Income Tax Facts You Didn't Know

    Learn about three federal income tax facts that most Americans may not know from one of the most trusted financial resources on the Web.
  8. Economics

    Calculating Net of Tax

    Net of tax is a figure that has been adjusted for taxes.
  9. Taxes

    Tax Haven Vs. Tax Shelters: Is There a Difference?

    Learn about the difference between tax havens and tax shelters, and how both are used to reduce tax liability or avoid paying taxes altogether.
  10. Taxes

    Use Tax Vs. Internet Sales Tax: How Are They Different?

    Learn about the differences between a use tax and an Internet sales tax. Find out about transactions in which the taxes apply, and to whom they apply.
RELATED FAQS
  1. Do I need to file an income tax return every year?

    Understand if a person needs to file a tax return every year. Learn the benefits of filing a yearly income tax return even ... Read Answer >>
  2. What is the difference between federal and state withholding tax?

    Discover whether you can file your taxes by yourself. The three main options for tax preparation are a tax professional, ... Read Answer >>
  3. What is the difference between income tax and capital gains tax?

    Understand the difference between a person's income tax and his capital gains tax. Learn when a person needs to pay taxes ... Read Answer >>
  4. How does the marginal tax rate system work?

    The marginal tax rate is the rate of tax that income earners incur on each additional dollar of income. As the marginal tax ... Read Answer >>
  5. What is the difference between a state income tax and a federal income tax?

    Learn the difference between state income tax and federal income tax based on tax rates, deductions, tax credits and taxable ... Read Answer >>
  6. How are effective tax rates calculated from income statements?

    Learn how to read an income statement and how to find the information necessary to calculate a company's effective income ... Read Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Cost Of Debt

    The effective rate that a company pays on its current debt. This can be measured in either before- or after-tax returns; ...
  2. Yield Curve

    A line that plots the interest rates, at a set point in time, of bonds having equal credit quality, but differing maturity ...
  3. Stop-Limit Order

    An order placed with a broker that combines the features of stop order with those of a limit order. A stop-limit order will ...
  4. Keynesian Economics

    An economic theory of total spending in the economy and its effects on output and inflation. Keynesian economics was developed ...
  5. Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications ...

    A member-owned cooperative that provides safe and secure financial transactions for its members. Established in 1973, the ...
  6. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles - GAAP

    The common set of accounting principles, standards and procedures that companies use to compile their financial statements. ...
Trading Center