A couple of weeks ago, I posted a blog about filing back years returns. After talking to a client yesterday, I realized that I missed talking about mailing those returns to the IRS.
Currently, past year returns have to be mailed to the IRS. But if you are sending more than once return, do you send them all together or separately? It depends on why you are catching up the returns.
If you are working with an IRS representative or agent, ask them how they want the returns sent and get an address from them. There are several IRS programs, Offer in Compromise comes to mind, that the Service wants all Federal tax returns up to date before they will work on. However, sending the returns to the regular addresses could slow down the processing. In these types of circumstances, I have been directed to send all the returns together to an address given to me by the IRS rep I was dealing with. But ask to be sure.
If you are just catching up your tax returns, I would mail them in separate envelopes. There is always a chance that the data entry person will miss that there are more than one return in the envelope and not enter all the returns. Sending them separately, avoids this problem. I generally mail in all returns at the same time but might hold e-filing the current year to allow for processing the back years first especially if we want this year’s refund to be used to pay a back balance due.