Before you start working on your return, review the tax prep checklist below. And remember, if you’re married and filing a joint return with your spouse, you’ll need all of the following information for them as well.
Let’s start with the obvious items on any tax prep checklist.
You might receive several different forms documenting the income you received. Some common ones include:
If you’re self-employed, you need to report that income. You can also claim business expenses to lower your taxable income.
Deductions can reduce your taxable income, lowering the amount of tax you owe or increasing your refund.
Generally, you can claim the standard deduction, which is a flat amount based on your filing status, or itemize
deductions. If you itemize deductions, you need information on:
If you have any of the following deductions, known as adjustments to income, you can claim them even if you
Tax credits are a dollar-for-dollar reduction in the amount of tax you owe. Generally, you’ll need the following
documentation to claim potentially valuable tax credits.
If you’re self-employed or earn a lot of money that doesn’t have federal and state income tax withheld, you
may have to make estimated tax payments. Make sure you include those estimates on your tax return, so you
don’t pay twice.
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