Make Your Taxes Less Taxing: Tips and Tricks
Tax Preparation Checklist
Go through the following checklist before you prepare your income tax return. Not every category will apply to you, so just pick those that do, and make sure you have that information available. When you’re ready to prepare your income tax return using TurboTax software, you’ll be surprised at how much time you’ll save by organizing your information beforehand.
Before you start tax preparation
Print this checklist out. Check things off as you collect them, and enter information such as Social Security numbers and cash amounts.
If you maintain your financial data in a personal finance software program such as Quicken®, print a report of your financial transactions for 2008. This is an invaluable tax preparation resource as you prepare your income tax return, and helps you clearly see where your money goes each year. Having this information in a report is much easier than going through your checks for the entire year.
As you review the report, highlight information you will need for your tax return or make notes to remind yourself of something later. If you need more information on a certain item, the report makes it easier to find the item on the computer when you need the detail. For example, if you know you paid check number 1077 to the IRS but don’t know if it was for last year’s balance due, an estimated payment for this year, or an extension payment, you can do a search for check number 1077 and get more detail. Now you’re ready to start gathering information. This income tax preparation checklist is divided into relevant categories to help you organize your tax information. As you receive or locate an item, check it off of the list.
Updated for tax year 2008. Content provided by Kiplinger, courtesy of TurboTax, a registered trademark of Intuit Inc.