Tax Season Checklist

Written by Al Meyers, MBA, CPA.

Happy New Year! With the new year unfortunately comes a new tax season. So many clients have their statements set to “electronic delivery” and forget to open those important emails with year-end tax statements accessible. I have found that to ensure that you don’t underreport income or forget to disclose important information to the IRS, a “tax organizer” calendar would be a valuable planning tool for our clients to get organized for filing their tax returns. Not only does it help alleviate the stress of getting these critical documents completed, but it also makes it much easier for your dedicated tax professionals who rely on the information you provide/do not provide when preparing tax returns.

 The most important thing here is to check your email during tax season so you do not miss important notifications, especially when a “tax statement” is available.  

One thing we strongly recommend is that the following taxpayers should NOT file before late March at the earliest (unless they know for sure they have all of the required tax documents):

  1. Taxpayers with significant brokerage accounts:  
    1. It is possible that if you have a large, diverse portfolio, you may receive a “Corrected” 1099 Brokerage Statement, which is fairly common.  Sometimes not all information is reported by the specific companies in a timely manner, and dividends tend to get reclassified in these corrected statements.
  2. Taxpayers expecting K-1 packages
    1. Business owners of pass-through entities such as partnerships and S-Corporations
    2. Beneficiaries of trusts and estates
    3. Investors in what are called “publicly traded partnerships”
    4. K-1s are not required to be filed until March 31st, and you may be faced with a crunch time to file unless you decide to file an extension.  Sometimes business owners whose business returns are extended will be required to file extensions on their personal returns.

Below is a month-by-month guide so you know when you can expect to receive certain documents.  This may not be a complete list, but it should provide you with the vast majority of documents and certainly the most common tax forms you will receive during tax season.

  • January
    • Download all W-2s, including W-2G’s if you earned income at the casinos.
    • Obtain 1099-G electronically (unemployment compensation)
      • If you received a state tax refund in the tax year, many states do not send these 1099-Gs via mail and you will have to access them on your state website
    • 1098 Mortgage Statement
    • 1099-INT
    • Pull together the P&L for your business, if self-employed or a firm does not do your business bookkeeping:
      • If self-employed, make sure you have documentation on all of your expenses and start pulling  together your P&L to ensure you identify all eligible business deductions
      • Ensure you kept adequate records for any home office or vehicle expenses
        • This includes expenses for a rental property if you own one
    • If you sold a home in 2022, find your HUD-1 closing statement (and if you have the HUD-1 from when you purchased it, that’s a bonus)
    • If you made any structural improvements to your business property during the year, or your primary residence prior to it being sold,  make sure you have the invoices showing the amount paid and the date the work was completed
    • Compile your 1099s for any income you generated as a contractor (1099-NECs required to be sent out by January 31st  
      • Remember, you are required to report all self-employment income even if a customer paid you less than $600 which is the threshold for companies to issue a 1099-NEC.
    • Don’t forget that the IRS postponed the implementation of the $600 reporting threshold for third-party payment platforms’ 1099-K forms, and this means you will only get these forms for more than $20,000 in gross payments and 200 transactions.
    • Make sure you get these 1099s:
      • 1099-MISC (rent, royalties, etc)
      • 1099-SA (HAS Distributions)
      • 1098-E (student loan interest)
      • 1095-A (health marketplace premiums)
      • 1098-T (tuition statement)
      • 1099-R (retirement distributions
      • 1099-C (cancellation of debt)
      • Social Security tax statement
    • If you paid for dependent care, contact your childcare provider and get the year-end provider statement
    • Ensure you get any charitable contribution statements from charities
    • Access your 529 account and ensure you pull up the year-end statement showing any contributions made in the tax year.
    • If you purchased any tax credits, ensure you include any documents in a folder for your tax professional
    • If you are required to make estimated payments (federal and/or state), make sure you make the final estimated quarterly payment by 1/17/23.
  • February
      • Look out for your 1099s from brokerage accounts
        • In addition, you may have to hold off until mid-March to file your returns if you have a lot of investments and you get a “corrected 1099” which is not uncommon
  • March
    • If applicable, “corrected” 1099 Brokerage Statements will be mailed
    • K-1 packages will be sent out
      • Note that K-1s are not required to be sent out until March 31st.  So if you are awaiting K-1s, it is best to file an extension so that you are not rushed in trying to file your 1040 at the last minute
      • If your business has filed an extension on the business return, then you DEFINITELY have to file an extension on your 1040.

Being organized and getting that folder of documents compiled for your tax professional will ensure that the tax filing process is as stress-free as possible and give you that peace of mind once your returns are with the tax authorities. Good luck!

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Manay CPA is a reputable, full-service CPA firm based in Atlanta, Georgia. Founded in 2001, we provide comprehensive accounting and tax solutions to individuals and businesses across all 50 states.

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