Form 540

CA Form 540 is a state income tax form used by California residents. It is better known as a California Resident Income Tax Return. This California tax form is used by citizens who live and work in California.

What is a Form 540?

A Form 540 is also known as a California Resident Income Tax Return. This form will be used for tax filing purposes by citizens living and working in the state of California. This form is used each year to file taxes and determine if the filer owes taxes or is entitled to a tax refund. The form will be sent to the state organization that processes and records the tax information.
This form will require personal identifying information, similar to what you put on a federal tax return form. If you are filed as married filing jointly, you’ll also need the information for your spouse. Below this section, you’ll need to calculate your taxes using your financial information from the tax year. This will include your stage wages, federal gross income, and any adjustments. You will then use these numbers to calculate your taxes, whether you owe the state or are getting a refund.

Most Common Uses

This form is commonly used to file income taxes in the state of California.

Components of a Form 540

A Form 540 contains the following sections:

  • Personal information
  • Filing status
  • Exemptions
  • Taxable income
  • Tax
  • Special credits
  • Other taxes
  • Payments
  • Use tax
  • Overpaid tax/tax due
  • Contributions
  • Amount you owe
  • Interest and penalties
  • Refund and direct deposit
  • Signature

Filing your tax return

When filing your tax return, you should use black or blue ink.  Print in capital letters.  Line up all dollar amounts.  If you do not have an entry for a line, leave it blank unless the instructions for that line specifically ask you to enter a -0-.

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Sample Form 540

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Sample Form 540

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