Today the Internal Revenue Service announced that it plans to begin processing individual income tax returns on 30 January.

2012 returns will only be accepted from 30 January to allow time for systems changes as a result of tax law changes under the American Taxpayer Relief Act enacted on 2 January.

Most individual taxpayers should be able to file from 30 January. However, some taxpayers will at this stage need to wait until February or March due to changes to residential energy credits, depreciation of property and general business credits. Key forms affected include Form 5695 (Residential Energy Credits), Form 4562 (Depreciation and Amortization) and Form 3800 (General Business Credit).

These changes are unlikely to affect US citizens and residents filing individual expat returns.  The IRS will be releasing a full listing of forms that the Service will not accept until after 30 January. Information regarding which other forms are affected will be posted as it comes to hand.

The late Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) patch allows taxpayers who would otherwise be affected by the absence of a patch to file from 30 January also.