With tax season in full swing, many people are struggling with understanding some of the tax law changes and expectations. Unfortunately, this can make filing your taxes difficult. If you have decided that you don't want to go it alone this year and you want to work with a tax preparation service, it's important that you know what you'll have to bring with you to get the job done. Here's a look at some of what you need.
You'll have to have proof of identification for yourself, your spouse if you have one, and any dependents that you have. This means photo identification for you and your spouse, and Social Security cards for your dependents. You'll need their Social Security numbers anyway, so make sure that you have that documentation.
You should call your tax preparation service ahead of time to see if they need any other proof of identification for your dependents. Sometimes, they want to see birth certificates or adoption records to prove that they qualify as a dependent under the tax laws.
You need to have the W2's or 1099 forms for all of your income sources. If you have income from any source that wasn't enough to warrant a 1099 or another tax form, you need to make sure that you have the receipts, pay stubs, or other documentation of that income. You'll need to account for all of the income you received through the year, including alimony, Social Security, any property sales, rental income, and other income sources.
If you believe that you have spent more in deductible expenses than the standard deduction for the year, you should gather receipts and documentation for all of those deductible expenses. Bring those receipts with you so that your tax preparer can help you to determine if they qualify. This way, you can determine if it's in your best interest to claim the standard deduction or to itemize your personal deductions.
Special Circumstance Information
One thing many taxpayers don't think about when getting ready to file for the year is any special circumstances that may have affected their tax situation for that year. You need to consider whether or not you have any special circumstances for the past tax year, including insurance losses, natural disaster issues, or police reports from significant thefts. Your tax preparer can review the documentation associated with these to determine if they are eligible for deduction or if they affect your taxes in any way.
Reach out to a tax service like Jeffrey Beebe CPA to learn more.