Prepping for Tax Season with your Accountant

Young woman meditating at the table in office

It’s about to get very busy for many accountants as we approach tax season and there were some big changes to tax law that went into effect in 2018. While Numbers 4 Nonprofits does not prepare taxes for our clients, we are busy year-round helping our nonprofit clients manage their money with mission. However, individuals and businesses are still responsible for working with their tax preparer to file taxes, and now is a good time to start preparing for your 2018 filing. A little bit of preparation for your tax preparation can go a long way!

Getting All Your Tax Forms Together

First things first, you need your income-related documents. Starting in January and February, you should receive these from different entities.

These forms can include:

Form W-2 (wage and salary income)

Form W-2G (gambling winnings)

Form 1099-A (foreclosure of a home)

Form 1099-B (sales of stock, bonds, or other investments)

Form 1099-C (canceled debts)

Form 1099-DIV (dividends)

Form 1099-G (state tax refunds and unemployment compensation)

Form 1099-INT (interest income)

Form 1099-K (business or rental income processed by third-party networks)

Form 1099-LTC (benefits received from a long-term care policy)

Form 1099-MISC (self-employment and other various types of income)

Form 1099-OID (original issue discount on bonds)

Form 1099-PATR (patronage dividends)

Form 1099-Q (distributions from an education savings plan)

Form 1099-QA (distributions from an ABLE account)

Form 1099-R (distributions from individual retirement accounts, 401(k) plans, and other types of retirement savings plans)

Form 1099-S (proceeds from the sale of real estate)

Form 1099-SA (distributions from health savings accounts)

Form SSA-1099 (Social Security benefits)

Form RRB-1099 (Railroad retirement benefits)

Schedule K-1 (income from partnerships, S corporations, estates, or trusts)

If you have received additional income less than $600 and not reported on the above-listed forms, let your tax preparer know the details about this income so it can be reported and taxed. If this income is over $600, you will receive a 1099-MISC sent by whomever sent you the payment, which you will then give to your tax preparer.

Expenses and Forms

Below are documents related to expenses that could change your deductions for the year. If you didn’t receive a document, you may use your receipts. Remember to talk to your tax preparer about how the 2018 tax law changes will affect charitable donations and medical expenses. Since deductions have gone up for both individuals and couples, you may not be able to take these expense deductions anymore.

Form 1097-BTC (bond tax credit)

Form 1098 (mortgage interest)

Form 1098-C (charitable contribution of vehicles)

Form 1098-E (student loan interest)

Form 1098-MA (homeowner mortgage payments)

Form 1098-T (tuition for higher education)

Business expenses (summarized by type and amount)

Child care expenses (summarized by provider and amount)

Gambling losses

Medical expenses

Moving expenses

Personal property tax, such as car registration paid

Real estate tax bills

Realized gain/loss report for any stocks, bonds, mutual funds and other capital investments sold during the year

Receipts or acknowledgment letters for gifts to charity

Rental expenses (summarized by property, type, and amount)

What if You’re Missing Tax Documents?

Contacting your employer, clients, bank, and/or brokers directly for missing W-2 and 1099 forms is the easiest way to obtain unreceived or misplaced copies. If you are having trouble getting the documents you need to file, you and your tax preparer can request copies from the IRS. Be aware, this takes time and there are several steps you’ll need to go through via the IRS website.

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