Pre-Filing Checklist: Preparing to File

A quick checklist to make sure you have everything you need to prepare to file a tax return with april.

Updated over a week ago

It’s that time of year: tax season! Here is a handy checklist of some of the information or forms you may need to file this year. Not everything may apply to you, so refer to the areas that do and start gathering all your documents.

Personal Information

  • You’ll need the social security numbers, legal full names and date of births for you, your spouse and all your dependents.

    • If you aren’t sure if you have dependents, click here.

  • If anyone in your household has received an Identity Protection PIN from the IRS, you’ll need this on hand as well.

    • If you need to get an Identity Protection PIN or have one but aren't sure how to find it, click here.

  • You may also need last year's tax information (either a copy of your return or a tax transcript).

    • If you don't have a copy of your return or a transcript, click here.

Information And Forms For How You Earned Your Income (If You’re An Employee Or Independent Contractor)

If You Own A Business

  • Business income: Whether for business or farming, you’ll need a profit or loss statement for the business.

If You’re Retired

Other Sources Of Income

  • Investment Income: You may receive various 1099 forms (such as DIV, INT, B) or K-1s to report this income.

  • Income from the government: You’ll receive a 1099-G for state refunds and any unemployment you’ve received.

  • Income from selling your house: you’ll want documentation detailing the original cost and cost of improvements. You may receive a 1099-S as well. Please see here for more information on what you’ll need for this gain to be excludable.

  • Rental income and expenses: You’ll want a profit and loss statement ready as well as any information

  • Canceled debt: 1099-C

  • Foreign Person's U.S. Source Income Subject to Withholding: 1042-S

  • Other miscellaneous income: Gambling winnings (W-2G), scholarships, jury duty, etc which may be reported on a 1099-MISC and are reported on the Schedule 1

Adjustments To Income Claimed On Schedule 1

Deduction And Credit Information

Certain deductions are only relevant if you are itemizing your return vs taking the standard deduction. If you are going to claim any of these deductions or credits, you’ll need to have supporting documentation.

Taxes Paid

This content is provided for informational purposes only and should not be construed as tax, legal, financial, or other professional advice. Rules and regulations vary by location and are subject to change, so please consult with an expert if you need specific advice.

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