Get Ready, Get Set and Get Your 2021 Taxes Done!
Use this handy checklist to ensure you have gathered all the required documents that you must bring with you to our VITA Tax Prep Site. You (and we!) want to complete your federal tax return as quickly and efficiently as possible!
Note that not all forms are applicable to all taxpayers.
- Photo identification for each taxpayer on the return (you and your spouse if a joint return)
- If Married Filing Jointly, BOTH taxpayers must be present at tax site or must have 2 copies of valid Power of Attorney Form 2848
- Social Security Cards for ALL persons on the return, including any dependents
- A check or printed statement from your financial institution showing BOTH the nine-digit Routing Number AND your account number; remember that a refund for a Married Filing Joint return can only be deposited into an account on which both taxpayers are listed
- The tax return(s) for the prior year for reference purposes for certain items included on the return
- Form 1095-A if anyone included on the tax return has health insurance from the MarketPlace
- Information about the receipt of Stimulus Payment # 3 sent by the IRS starting in March 2021 through December 2021
- Information about Advanced Child Tax Credit payments: Bring IRS letter # 6419 or printout from Child Tax Credit Update Portal
- Form W-2 (wages); Form W-2G (gambling winnings)
- Form 1099-G (unemployment compensation, state or local tax refunds)
- Form 1099-INT (interest); Form 1099-DIV (dividends)
- Form SSA-1099; Form 1099-R (social security benefits/IRA/pension distributions)
- Form RRB-1099-R (railroad benefits); be sure to bring your prior year’s return for this one!
- Form 1099-MISC (miscellaneous income such as gambling winnings, jury duty, etc.)
- For 1099-NEC (nonemployee compensation)
- Form 1099-B (capital gains & losses on investments, also bring detailed supporting schedules)
- Form 1099-C (cancellation of debt)
- Form 1099-S (Sale of your home) & the HUD-1 Settlement Statement & the original purchase date & purchase price of home
- Forms K-1 (interest, dividend, royalty, & capital gains and losses from partnerships, trusts or S Corps)
- MILITARY FAMILIES ONLY: Information about rental income
- Educator expenses: If a K to Grade 12 educator, determine amount personally paid for classroom books, supplies and equipment, or your personal professional development.
- If Self-employed and personally paid for health insurance, gather information about the total for 2021
- Form 1099-SA &/or Form 5498-SA: distributions from & contributions to a health savings account (HSA)
- Alimony paid or received in 2021, determine the total IF divorce agreement is dated on or before December 31, 2018
- Form 1098-E (student loan interest)
- Charitable Contributions (Single up to $300; MFJ up to $600) for taxpayers who do not itemize; gather information about 2021 contributions.
Expenses & Tax Deductions:
The 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act increased/doubled the standard deduction and removed the tax reduction for personal and dependent exemptions. Most taxpayers are now choosing to use the standard deduction instead of itemizing. For example, for 2021, the standard deduction for a couple filing as Married Filing Jointly is $25,100. If their itemized deductions are less than $25,100, they benefit more by using the higher standard deduction. If you choose to itemize, be able to provide information about the following:
- Medical payments & Charitable Contributions
- Real Estate Owned: Property Taxes Paid & Mortgage Interest Paid (Form 1098)
- Sales tax paid on large purchases (car, boat, etc.)
- Child-care expenses: Statement from child-care providers including SS# or Employer ID #
- Form 1098-T (Tuition statement from college); also bring list of amounts paid for books, supplies & equipment required for courses
- MILITARY FAMILIES ONLY: Information about rental expenses
If self-employed, bring information about your business income & expenses, already gathered and totaled for the year, so we can easily complete the required Schedule C for your business. Note that VITA tax preparers are not able to prepare returns for businesses with inventory, employees, contract labor, business use of a home, depreciation, actual expenses for use of a car such as gas and repairs, total business expenses greater than $35,000, or a net loss for the year.