It’s March, which means your accountant is ready for your tax paperwork. Here is a guide to what you’ll need:

  • W-2’s – Wages and tax statements
  • 1099’s – Taxable income, interest dividends and self-employed income
  • Schedule K-1’s – Income or loss from a partnership or an S-corporation
  • 1098’s – Mortgage interest
  • Real estate and personal property tax statements
  • Brokerage statements from any investments
  • Closing statements and supporting documents
  • Tax notices from the IRS
  • Quarterly estimated tax payments
  • Household employee W-3’s and 1096’s
  • Written acknowledgement of charitable contributions of $250 and more
  • Fair market value of donations of stock or other non-cash property

Accountants Save You Money

Preparing your own taxes can be time-consuming, stressful and confusing. Nobody knows the tax code like a good accountant and if you have ever seen the tax code, then you understand why accountants are in such high demand. CPA’s stay up-to-date on tax laws, know the breaks, are creative and keep you away from common tax-filing mistakes that could end up causing a penalty. There are thousands of little-known deductions, credits and rebates that you may have missed. Go to an accountant and you will end up saving money in the long run.

It’s Not Too Late For Totally Legal Tax Shelters

Traditional IRAs and SEPs offer tax advantages because they are funded with pre-tax dollars. That means in addition to not paying taxes on the contributions to the IRA, you will be taxed at a lower effective rate…as long as you open and fund them before April 15.

Being prepared for tax time is just a variation on the theme of organization. If you track your bank account daily, balance your checkbook every month and categorize your income and expenses, there should be no headaches getting your required documents to pay Uncle Sam.

Find an experienced, competent CPA or tax attorney who specializes in the area you need help with.

Judith HeftJudy Heft, Principal, Judy Heft & Associates is a personal financial concierge with offices in Greenwich and Stamford. She can be contacted via email at or by phone 203-978-1858.