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Amy on Organizing Records


Get a head start on organizing tax records

Amy Praskac - Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Your tax documents will be arriving in the mail and you need a system to manage them. I use a plastic document envelope—available at your local office supply or grocery store—to file my tax related documents as they arrive in the mail.

Be on the lookout for these documents:

  • 1099-income for independent contractors
  • 1099-B if you use a broker
  • 1099-DIV for dividends
  • 1099-G for unemployment benefits
  • 1099-INT for interest from checking, savings and other types of accounts.
  • 1099-R for distribution from pension or retirement account
  • 1099-SSA for social security benefits
  • K-1 for income from a small business, partnership or trust
  • W-2 for salaried employees

Compare these documents to your year-end statements to see if they are correct. As you receive your year-end summary statements, you can shred quarterly statements.

After you file your tax return, shred your tax return for 2010 that you filed in 2011. You need to retain a tax return for, at most, seven years. Stick with this self-purging system and you’ll never need more than one file drawer for your tax returns.

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