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Before you begin to prepare your income tax return, go through the following checklist. Highlight the areas that apply to you, and make sure you have that information available. Better yet, attach the list to a folder of your tax documents, and check items off as you add them to the folder.

Personal Information

This information tells the IRS exactly who's filing, who is covered in your tax return, and where to deposit your tax refund.

  • Social Security numbers and dates of birth for you, your spouse, your dependents

  • Copies of last year's tax return for you and your spouse (helpful, but not required)

  • Bank account and routing number, if depositing your refund directly into your account

Information about your income

  • W-2 forms for you and your spouse

  • 1099-C forms for cancellation debt

  • 1099-G forms for unemployment income, or state or local tax refunds

  • 1099-MISC forms for you and your spouse (for any independent contractor work)

  • 1099-R. Form 8606 for payments/distributions from IRAs or retirement plans

  • 1099-S forms for income from sale of a property

  • 1099-INT, 1099-DIV, 1099-B or K-1s for investment or interest income

  • SSA-1099 for Social Security benefits received

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