Can You File Taxes Twice?

Did this happen to you? Did you file the income tax return twice? Worry not; there is an excellent solution for the same. There is a procedure the IRS follows when it comes to processing and receiving income tax returns. To avoid issues such as theft of personal identity and fraudulent activities in terms of taxation, the Internal Revenue Service has a Social Security Number registered under your name to identify your return and its authenticity.

tax filling

To learn how to calculate tax percentages from the total, visit our article.

If your return has been filed twice, they can identify it via the social security number and verify the situation for fraud or theft. But then, what happens if you file your taxes twice? Please find out more about it right here in this article!

Can you file taxes twice?

If you file taxes twice, the IRS will reject your return and notify you with error code 0515 or IND-515. In addition, IRS will inform you that the taxpayer with the same Social Security number has already filed a tax return for the same year.

The IRS utilizes sophisticated computer systems to process millions of tax returns annually. When the IRS receives a tax return, it checks the taxpayer’s Social Security number against its records. If the system finds that a tax return for the same year has already been filed under the same Social Security number, it will reject the subsequent filing.

Upon such rejection, the IRS notifies the taxpayer with an error code 0515 or IND-515, alerting them that a tax return for the same year has already been processed with their Social Security number.

Repercussions of Filing Taxes Twice

There are several repercussions of filing taxes twice, some of which are merely administrative, while others can have more significant consequences:

  1. Rejection of the Second Tax Return: The IRS’s system automatically rejects duplicate tax returns. This rejection can delay processing your legitimate tax return and refund if adjustments are necessary.
  2. Potential for an IRS Audit: The IRS may interpret the filing of multiple tax returns as an attempt to defraud the government, mainly if there are substantial discrepancies between the two returns. This could trigger an audit, a detailed examination of your tax return by the IRS, to ascertain the accuracy of the information provided.
  3. Penalties and Interest: If the IRS concludes that the duplicate filing was an attempt to evade taxes, it could impose penalties and interest. For example, the civil fraud penalty is typically 75% of the unpaid tax due to fraud, plus interest on the unpaid tax and the penalty. This is a rare situation.

What If You Made a Mistake?

Errors happen. If you realize you made a mistake on your initial tax return after it’s been filed, don’t file another complete tax return. Instead, you should file an amended tax return using Form 1040X. This form allows you to make necessary changes to the original return, such as changing your filing status, income, deductions, or credits.


What happens if you file taxes twice?

Suppose you accidentally filed a tax return twice. In that case, IRS will reject the second one, send you a message with an error code (0515 or IND-515), and inform you that the taxpayer with the same Social Security number has already filed a tax return for the same year.

Does the second return get rejected?

“I filed my federal taxes twice!” sounds highly confusing. But, as we know, approximately all returns are filed electronically, and once that happens, the same is linked to your social security number. The IRS then flags that same number combination and straightaway bars you from filing another return in the same name.

If the return gets filed twice, the second one will be rejected by the IRS and reverted to justify why it happened. A code of error is assigned to this situation, i.e., IND-515 or 0515, which is information that the return has already been filed for that particular year with a similar Social Security Number. Double returns won’t be an issue since the IRS probably sorts it.

Are you filing taxes twice? If that’s the situation, then receiving a rejection is justified. But you need to worry if that’s not the case and you’ve received a rejection on your first filing.

What should you do if you file taxes twice in the same year?

Firstly, you should check for the details on the rejection letter and crosscheck the number assigned to you. Then, if you’re sure that no return has been filed on your end and the number matches yours, immediately contact the Internal Revenue Service at (800) 908-4490.

You can contact them on Monday and Friday between 7:00 AM and 7:00 PM (local time). The situation must be rectified because identity theft is malpractice if the number familiarizes yours and is used. You may find the 14039 online, and you need to fill it out and mail the same attesting to the income tax return. Also, do not forget to attach a photo ID proof, your Social Security Card, driver’s license, or passport copy.

Every time an identity theft occurs, the IRS’s specifically assigned team thoroughly investigates this situation. Mainly, looking at the situation and analyzing the returns can take around 180 days, while some instances are solved under this time limit. After that, an official letter will be sent to you, or a call will be made to you by the unit IRS, who then makes you go through the entire process in detail.

An additional IP Pin or identity protection personal identification number will be provided to you, which provides safety from any fraudulent taxation issues. As you will aim to file returns in the future in electronic format, you will need to submit this number. This pin ensures that only your return will be filed under your social security number. This will also prevent the Internal Revenue Service from probable delays and providing returns along with refunds.

Is there a penalty for filing taxes twice in one year?

No, there is no penalty for filing taxes twice. You will get just the error code from IRS. IRS will inform you using error codes and notice that the taxpayer with the same Social Security number has already filed a tax return for the same year.

How do I fix reject code IND-516-02?

To fix IRS reject code IND-516-02; you need to check did you or your relative filed a tax return twice for the same Social Security Number. If you accidentally file twice, one return will be accepted, and one rejected. However, in all other cases, contact the IRS at 1-800-829-1040 to discuss further.

In Conclusion: Safety In Your Very Own Hands!

Can you file your taxes twice? Of course, you can get it by mistake, and there is a solution. Of course, you will always get a return from the IRS itself. But there are also cases when you still receive a refund even if a single return is not filed from your end. If this happens, you know the procedure now, but several measures can help you avoid this situation entirely.


The IRS’s systems are designed to prevent duplicate filings, and attempts to do so can lead to rejections, delays, audits, and rare potential legal penalties. Therefore, it is always recommended to thoroughly review your tax return for accuracy before submitting it. If mistakes are made, utilize the appropriate mechanisms, like Form 1040X, to make corrections rather than filing another total return. If you’re unsure about any part of the tax filing process, consider seeking the assistance of a qualified tax professional to ensure everything is done correctly.


Daniel Smith

Daniel Smith

Daniel Smith is an experienced economist and financial analyst from Utah. He has been in finance for nearly two decades, having worked as a senior analyst for Wells Fargo Bank for 19 years. After leaving Wells Fargo Bank in 2014, Daniel began a career as a finance consultant, advising companies and individuals on economic policy, labor relations, and financial management. At, Daniel writes about personal finance topics, value estimation, budgeting strategies, retirement planning, and portfolio diversification. Read more on Daniel Smith's biography page. Contact Daniel:

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