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In the United States, IRS Form 1040, line 6 is for Capital Gains. The instructions on the form say:

Capital gain or (loss). Attach Schedule D if required. If not required, check here

In order to determine whether Schedule D must be filed, I consult the Instructions for Schedule 1040, where on page 27 the condition is found:

If you sold a capital asset, such as a stock or bond, you must complete and attach Form 8949 and Schedule D.

However in the following paragraphs an exception is provided to this condition:

You don’t have to file Form 8949 or Schedule D if you aren’t deferring any capital gain by investing in a qualified opportunity zone fund and both of the following apply. 1. You have no capital losses, and your only capital gains are capital gain distributions from Form(s) 1099-DIV, box 2a (or substitute statements); and 2. None of the Form(s) 1099-DIV (or substitute statements) have an amount in box 2b (unrecaptured section 1250 gain), box 2c (section 1202 gain), or box 2d (collectibles (28%) gain

No further instructions are provided on how to complete line 6. What goes into line 6 if the exception applies? Would one just add up all amounts from all forms 1099-DIV, box 2a?

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The remaining instructions are further down the page, just past Exception 2:

If Exception 1 applies, enter your total capital gain distributions (from box 2a of Form(s) 1099-DIV) on line 6 and check the box on that line. If you received capital gain distributions as a nominee (that is, they were paid to you but actually belong to someone else), report on line 6 only the amount that belongs to you. Include a statement showing the full amount you received and the amount you received as a nominee. See the Schedule B instructions for filing requirements for Forms 1099-DIV and 1096.

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  • I can't believe I missed this. I read the whole thing at least 5 times.
    – NingNing
    Dec 23, 2019 at 1:26

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