What Documents Do You Need for Tax Preparation?

Tax season is slowly approaching once again, but before it hits you like a truck, here’s a list of the documents you’ll need to file your taxes.


If you’re employed, your employer will send you two copies of your W-2 forms in tax envelopes. Likewise, your CPA will use tax return envelopes to mail you your tax return information. These envelopes can have varying designs and will be highly secured so they will not be tampered with. If you are unemployed, you’ll need to have a 1099-G unemployment form from the Department of Labor in your state.

If you’re employed, you will need the following items to file your taxes:

  • Your Social Security Number (SSN) or tax ID number
  • Spouse’s full name, SSN, and Date of Birth (DOB)
  • Stimulus payment or Economic Impact Payments (EIP) data
  • Any IRS-supplied Identity Protection PIN for you or your spouse
  • Routing and account numbers where you’d like to pay/receive your balance/refund
  • Dependents’ DOBs
  • Dependents’ SSNs
  • Dependents’ Tax ID numbers if you’re not using DOBs or SSNs
  • If applicable, childcare records with the provider’s tax ID number
  • Dependents’ income
  • Income of other adults living in your home
  • Form 8332 so only one parent claims a tax exemption for a dependent


However, if you are self-employed, you will need to gather other items like forms 1099, 1099-NEC, and 1040-ES. You’ll also need schedules K-1, income and expenses records (e.g., credit card statements, receipts for office supplies, and check registers), and information on business assets for depreciation—include details like acquisition date and costs. It’s required to include your office in home information, or if you operate your business in your house.

Rental Income

If you own a rental property, you will need to gather records of incomes and expenses, information on rental assets for depreciation, and be sure to include details like acquisition date and costs. You’ll also need to fill out form 1040-ES for estimated tax payments.

Retired People

If you receive a retirement income, the IRS will require you to fill out forms 1099-R for pension, IRA, or annuity income and SSA-1099 for Social Security income. Additionally, you’ll need to fill out form RRB-1099 for Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) income and provide the traditional IRA basis, or the amount of taxed money you contributed to the IRA.

Savings, Investments, Dividends

In the case that you have savings, investments, or dividends, you can fill out forms 1099-INT for interest income, 1099-OID for Original Issue Discount in your taxable income, 1099-DIV for dividend income, 1099-B from broker or barter exchange, and 1099-S from a real estate property seller. Additionally, you want to complete forms 1099-SA for Health Savings Account, 1099-LTC for Long-Term Care reimbursements, and 1040-ES for estimated tax payments. Likewise, you will most likely need to state any expenses related to investments and any cryptocurrency transactions.

Homeowner Deductions

Surprisingly, the IRS offers deductions for many different reasons, from homeownership to educational expenses. For instance, homeowners can benefit from deductions by filling out any of the 1098 series forms, providing mortgage interest rate statements, tax records for your personal and real estate property, and receipts for energy-efficient home renovations.

Other Deductions

If you make large donations, you can apply for deductions by providing the IRS with cash amounts of donations,
records of non-cash donations, and miles driven for charity purposes. Additionally, childcare expenses can be deducted from your taxes as well by providing records of payments to licensed daycare for infants and pre-schoolers as well as payments to babysitters for kids 13 years old and under.

Lastly, if you have any educational expenses, you can fill out forms 1098-T from your schools or institutions, and 1098-E for paid student loan interests. For this, you’ll need receipts of expenses and any scholarship and fellowship records.

These are the most basic and popular forms almost everyone needs to file their taxes. Today many companies use EOR services to help them easily manage taxes and other services for their employees.


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