What to Bring to a Tax Appointment

Last Updated: June 08, 2022 7 min read
Author: Chelsea L.

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What documents should I bring to my upcoming tax appointment? Any and every document that you have received stating that it is an important tax document.

What to Bring to a Tax Appointment

Filing your personal taxes may seem overwhelming and stressful, especially if this is the first tax season where you have had to file. There are many options now available to you to help you prepare your taxes, whether you’re comfortable preparing them completely by yourself, using tax filing software, or using the help of one of the many tax preparers available. No matter the route you take, you will need to gather all of your tax documents in order to ensure that your taxes are filled out completely and accurately. This article will be a great resource for you as you are gathering the right documents that you need. It is a good idea to use this long list as a checklist of all of the material that you should bring with you to prepare your taxes.

If you are seeking help from a tax preparer (especially if this is your first time with this particular tax preparer) I recommend reaching out to them before your appointment as they may have additional information they need from you.

These documents are ones that you’ve either always had on hand, or they have been sent to you recently through mail or email. They should be labeled as tax documents and be safely gathered for your tax preparation appointment. Double-check that each document is for the correct tax year and that the personal information listed is correct (name, address, etc.).

What to Bring to a Tax Appointment Personal Documents

Personal Documents

The IRS needs your personal information to confirm that it is you that is filing your taxes, not someone else. This is a way that they avoid fraud. This information is required from every taxpayer, regardless of their filing status (single, married filing jointly, married filing separately, head of household, and qualifying widow(er) with dependent child)

  • Photo ID (driver’s license or passport)
  • Social Security Number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number
  • Spouse’s Social security card or Taxpayer Identification Number (if applicable)
  • Birth dates and full names of you and your spouse (if applicable)
  • Identity Protection PIN (if one has been issued to you or your spouse)
  • Blank check with the routing and account numbers from your preferred bank account for direct deposit of your refund or to make your payment
  • Copy of last year's tax return (if you are a new client)

Dependents Documents

If you will have any dependents on your tax return, you need to gather their information as well to file your taxes. These documents are needed for all dependents.

  • Social security cards or Tax Identification Numbers
  • Dates of birth
  • Childcare records and childcare provider’s Tax Identification Number
  • All information involving the income of the dependents
  • Form 8332 if you are a noncustodial parent that is now given the right to claim the child from the custodial parent

What to Bring to a Tax Appointment Income Documents

Income Documents

The tax forms involving taxable income that are needed vary depending on the taxpayer’s situation. All sources of income need to be reported. Bring all the important tax documents that apply.

Employed

  • W-2 Form(s) from all jobs done in the past year

Self-Employed

  • 1099 Form(s) and K-1 Schedules detailing self-employment income
  • 1040-ES Form stating all estimated tax payments made
  • Records of any income not reported on 1099 Forms
  • Records of all business-related expenses involving self-employment (credit card statements)
  • Asset information for depreciation of all business assets
  • Office Information if located in personal home

Unemployed

  • 1099-G Form stating unemployment benefits received

Retired

  • SSA-1099 Form and RRB-1099 Form for Social Security/RRB income
  • 1099-R Form for pension/IRA/annuity income

Investments & Saving

  • 1099-INT, 1099-OID, and 1099-DIV stating interest and dividend income
  • 1099-B and 1099-S from sales of stock or property
  • 1099-SA and 1099-LTC for Health Savings Account are long-term care reimbursements
  • Records of all transactions involving cryptocurrency
  • Records of expenses related to your investments

Other Income

  • W-2G or other records for gambling income and losses
  • Records on rental property income or losses
  • 1099-MISC for royalty income
  • 1099-G for state/local tax refund
  • 1098-T for scholarships and fellow
  • 1099-R for disability income
  • Records of alimony received or paid (ex-spouse's SSN)
  • Records of trust income
  • Records of jury duty
  • Records of hobby income and expenses
  • Records of money earned from prizes and awards

What to Bring to a Tax Appointment Expense Documents

Expense Documents

The following items involving expenses that are needed on your tax return vary depending on the taxpayer's situation. These expenses, if greater than the standard deduction, allowing you to itemize your tax return and further lower your taxes owed. Bring all the documents that apply.

  • 1098 Forms for mortgage interest
  • 5498 Forms for IRA contributions and HSA contributions
  • 1098-E Form for student loans
  • 1095 Form-A for health insurance through Marketplace
  • Records of all charitable contributions and donations
  • Records of all medical and dental expenses
  • Records of payment to childcare provider or nanny for children under 13 while working
  • Records of classroom expenses used as an educator
  • Records of state/local taxes paid
  • Records showing the amount of vehicle sales tax paid
  • Records of tax preparation fees

If you’ve received any documents from the IRS that are not included on this list but state “IMPORTANT TAX DOCUMENT” please bring them as well.

What to Bring to a Tax Appointment Where Can I File My Taxes

Where Can I File My Taxes?

There are a variety of free ways available to you to file your taxes. The IRS (Internal Revenue Service) has a Free File program that allows you to file electronically for free on IRS.gov and on your mobile device using the IRS2GO app. The IRS has also provided free tax preparation software for most taxpayers. This software does the work for you by finding all deductions, credits, and exemptions for you.

Service members and qualifying veterans can use MilTax for filing their taxes.

You can also prepare your taxes for free online at GetYourRefund and MyFreeTaxes.

The IRS also has a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program that offers free tax preparation on simple returns for qualifying taxpayers. Find a VITA site near you.

If you are comfortable, you can also file your taxes yourself by using the IRS Free File Fillable Forms.

Lastly, you can pay a tax professional to prepare your taxes for you. A public accountant will be up to date on all tax laws and be able to ensure that all relevant information is included in your tax return and that you meet the filing deadline. The IRS website has also provided a resource for you to find the right ta professional that you need. You can find that here.

Final Thoughts

This article is intended to ease any and all stress that is involved in preparing and filing your taxes. As the taxpayer, you want to include everything that you need in your taxes while also getting the maximum return. Not including some of these important documents can seriously affect your taxes and may lead to a tax audit or rejection. Make sure to gather all of the tax documents that you have received over the past couple of months and follow this checklist to mark that you have what you need. If you have any questions about your taxes I strongly recommend reaching out to a tax professional for help. They will be able to assess your situation and give you the information that you need for your unique tax situation.

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