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HelloCustomer- Welcome to JustAnwers! Yes you should file an amended return on Form 1040-X if you want to change your filing status. I do not think this will increase your audit risk. However it will take longer for the IRS to process the return; usually 16 weeks. On the 1040-X you'll just need to check a box on the first page indicating your change in filing status. Hope that helps. Thanks!
You will be able to prepare your own 1040-X and file it with the IRS. However I'm sure that HR Block would be able to help and get it done quickly. Here are the instructions to the amended return https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/i1040x.pdf
I would say something along the lines of "taxpayer inadvertently filed their personal income tax returns as married filing separately. The returns are being amended to file as married filing jointly." You are within your right to make this change. You don't really need a good reason.
Yes your wife will need to sign the 1040-X as a joint filer. Yes you can use the post office to send the forms. Or you could also use fax, email or any other convenient method.
She will not need to file a separate return first. Just go ahead and amend your 1040 to file a joint return.