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Getting organized for 2019 taxes: What you need to know

Individuals 02.11.2020 3 MIN READ

You can’t escape tax time, but a little preparation can make this annual task much easier. Whether you do your own taxes or use a tax preparer, this list will help you organize the necessary information. A copy of last year’s tax return can also help you gain insight on anything else you may need to gather.

Where did you receive income in 2019?

You’ll need this form or other documentation:
  • Paid job(s)
  • W-2
  • Investments, including interest or dividends
  • 1099-INT, 1099-DIV, 1099-OID
  • Tax refunds from a state government or unemployment compensation
  • 1099-G
  • A pension, annuity or retirement plan
  • 1099-R
  • Social Security benefits
  • SSA-1099, RRB-1099
  • Other miscellaneous income
  • 1099-MISC
  • Business or rental properties, farms
  • Business records, receipts and check registers

What expenses may reduce your tax bill?


You’ll need this form or other documentation:
  • Home mortgage interest
  • 1098
  • Real estate taxes
  • Receipts from your city, town or county1
  • Charitable contributions
  • Receipts from charities, especially if gifts >$250 in value2
  • Tuition, fees or other qualified education expenses
  • 1098-T, receipts
  • Student loan interest
  • 1098-E
  • Child and dependent-care expenses
  • Caregivers' tax ID numbers, receipts, copies of checks or check register
  • Casualty loss from a federally declared disaster
  • Proof of loss, contractor estimates, receipts for the cost of cleaning up or making repairs, amount of any insurance reimbursement

What else might impact your taxes?

You’ll need this form or other documentation:
  • Contributed to a retirement plan, including Individual Retirement Account (IRA) or converted a traditional IRA to a Roth IRA
  • Amount of your contributions, your W-2, Form 5498 and traditional IRA basis (Form 8606), 1099-R
  • Contributed to a Health savings account (HSA)
  • Year-end statement, copies of checks or check register, Form 5498-SA
  • Sold investments resulting in a capital gain or loss
  • 1099-B
  • Changed your family structure
  • SSN or other IRS-issued Taxpayer Identification Number for spouse and/or dependents, divorce or separation instrument, W-2 for adoption benefits, receipts for adoption expenses
  • Cancellation of debt
  • 1099-C

Have you already paid some of your taxes?

You’ll need this form or other documentation:
  • Withholding from your paycheck
  • Included on your W-2
  • Withholding from a pension annuity, 401(k) withdrawal, etc.
  • 1099-R
  • Estimated payments
  • Copy of your payment vouchers and checks

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1If you escrow, these payments may also be noted on the 1098 you receive from your lender.

2Substantiation letter for non-cash gifts should indicate amount of cash and description of other property, statement indicating whether any goods or services were exchanged if applicable.

Note: Not intended to cover all situations or examples. Consult a financial or tax advisor to be sure you fully understand your tax situation.

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