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Last Updated: 4/15/2019

How to File an Income Tax Return on Paper

Before beginning your Minnesota return (Form M1, Individual Income Tax), you must complete federal Form 1040 to determine your federal taxable income.

The Minnesota Department of Revenue uses scanning equipment to process paper returns. Follow these instructions to ensure we process your return efficiently and accurately: 

  • Use your legal name, not a nickname.
  • Use whole dollar amounts. Round your amounts to the nearest whole dollar.
  • Leave lines blank if they do not apply to you or if the amount is zero.
  • Do not write extra numbers, symbols, or notes on your return, such as decimal points or dollar signs. Enclose any explanations on a separate sheet unless you are instructed to write them on your return.
  • Place a copy of your federal return and schedules behind your Minnesota forms. Do not send in your federal Forms W-2 or 1099.
  • Sign and date your return. Your spouse must also sign if you are married and filing a joint return.
  • Do not use staples or tape on your return. If you want to ensure your papers stay together, use a paper clip.
Note: If you are not able to download and print forms from our website, you can have forms mailed to you by calling us at 651-296-3781 or 1-800-652-9094 (toll-free).

How do I complete Form M1?

Download Form M1, Individual Income Tax. To complete the form, type your information into the appropriate fields. In addition:

  • Use the Tab key to move from field to field on the form.
  • To mark an “X” in an oval box, click inside the oval.
  • To indicate a negative number, use the minus sign. When you use a minus sign, an “X” will automatically appear in the designated box.
  • When you print your completed return, make sure you check both "Auto-rotate” and “Center pages" in your print options. Do not check the "Shrink to fit" or "Expand to fit" boxes. If these boxes are already checked, click on them to uncheck.

If you want additional help see, Minnesota Individual Income Tax Instructions.

If you want to complete Form M1 by hand, see the instructions below.

How do I complete Form M1 by hand?

Download and print Form M1. When filling out the form:

  • Use black ink.
  • Do not highlight numbers, as this prevents our scanning equipment from reading the numbers.
  • Use capital letters when entering your name and address.
  • Do not put a slash through any numbers such as 0 or 7.
  • Do not use parentheses or minus signs to report negative amounts. Instead, mark an “X” in the box to the left of your amount.

Where do I mail my Minnesota return?

Mail your return with all attached forms and schedules to:

Minnesota Individual Income Tax
Mail Station 0010
St. Paul, MN 55145-0010

When mailing your return, you must include a copy of your federal income tax return (including schedules) and any income tax returns you filed with other states. Be sure to include enough postage to avoid having your mail carrier return your forms. You may need additional postage if you enclose more than three sheets of paper.

Where Do I Mail Payments if Paying by Check? 

Mail your check and payment voucher to the address given on the voucher. You must include all information requested on the voucher for your payment to be processed.
For information on when to mail your return, see Due Dates for Filing Individual Income Tax Return.