Prior Taxes – What Do I Need to File Prior Taxes?

Posted on 17. Jul, 2012 by in File Prior Taxes, Prior Tax Returns

While typically the only things you need to file prior taxes are the things you would have needed if you had filed them in the year they should have been filed, it is possible to forget things as time passes.  In fact, if there are several years of prior taxes yet to be filed, it can get even more confusing.  Hopefully you have everything you need on hand and just have not gotten around to filing, but if that is not the case it may take some creativity to figure out how to get all the information together.

Get Started

First, create a file for each year of prior taxes that needs to be filed.  This could be a folder for each year, or a binder with a tab for each year.  Next, create a checklist of things to gather for each year.  You can do this yourself by simply going through the tax form and making note of what information is needed for each section.  If you are working with a CPA they may have a check list, and possibly even a binder, for you to use.  You may also be able to find a printable online.

The Dirty Work

Whether you plan to file your own prior taxes or you are working with a CPA, this is the hard part, and it is going to fall to you.  You are going to have to fill those files with all of the applicable items on the checklist.  Take each needed item one by one.  Likely the first item is any W-2s from prior years.  You received a copy of one from each employer.  If you cannot find them, you can contact previous employers to obtain them, but they will likely not come quickly, and you may have to pay for them.  Receipts for deductible items often cannot be replaced, but on some occasions reasonable estimates are accepted.  This is where a CPA comes in really handy.  They are specially trained to know which items this will work with and which it will not.

It can be overwhelming, but with a good CPA and a good start, you can have prior taxes filed as soon as possible.

We are a CPA firm and we deal specifically with clients who need to file prior tax returns.  Call us today for a FREE consultation at 1-888-570-1033.


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