Most of us are getting ready to file our income tax returns. Whether you are planning on preparing your tax return yourself or will be utilizing the services of a tax professional, you will need to have your information ready before you start. So what information do you need?
Besides your basic information — name, address, Social Security number — for yourself, your spouse, and your dependents, you will need all information regarding your income and your deductible expenses. Here is a list of some of the basic forms you may receive.
If you worked as an employee at any time during 2014, your employer will provide you with a W-2. This form will list your gross wages received, taxes deducted, and other information such as contributions to a retirement plan and health insurance payments.
If you had gambling winnings, you will receive this form.
This is a new form for 2014. If you, your spouse, or a dependent purchased health insurance through the Marketplace, you should receive this form. You will need it to calculate your premium tax credit.
If you made payments on a mortgage in 2014, you will receive this form from your lender. This form shows the mortgage interest you paid and may also show real estate taxes that were paid on your behalf if your lender requires you to make payments into an escrow account.
If you made payments on student loans in 2014, you will receive this form from your student loan administrator.
The college you, your spouse, or your child is attending will send this form showing the amount of qualified tuition and related expenses paid in 2014.
You will receive this form if you sold stock or bonds or had stock or bond sales inside of your mutual fund.
If you owned stock that paid dividends to you in 2014, you will receive this form.
You will receive this form if you received certain government payments such as unemployment compensation, state or local income tax refunds, or agriculture payments.
Your bank will send you this form if you earned interest on your savings account or certificate of deposit. You will also receive this form if you earned interest on U.S. savings bonds.
If you worked for someone as an independent contractor and you received more than $600 in 2014, you will receive this form. This form will also be sent to you if you received rents, royalties, or some other income in 2014.
If you are a member of a cooperative that paid out patronage dividends in 2014, you will receive this form.
This form will come to you if you received some form of retirement benefits such as distributions from your IRA, your pension, or from an annuity.
The administrator of your health savings account will send you this form if you received distributions during 2014.
Did you receive Social Security benefits in 2014? If so, you will receive this form.
This form shows railroad retirement benefits received.
Always review any forms received to make sure they match your records. While issuers of the forms strive to be accurate, mistakes can be made. If you discover an error, contact the issuer immediately and request a corrected form. They may ask you to submit supporting documentation, so be prepared before you contact them.
Next week, we’ll discuss some tax deductible expenses.
For further information on these forms, contact your tax professional or go to www.irs.gov. Alternatively, you are welcome to contact us.
Judith Ackland has more than 26 years of experience in accountancy and financial planning, including seventeen years as a CFO of a diverse business. She started Crystal Financial in 2010 to help a wide array of individuals, families, and business owners better understand their finances and how good financial management could help them achieve their goals. Judith has an MA in Professional Accountancy from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln as well as a Certified Public Accountant Certificate and a Certified Financial Planner designation.