If you file a claim for a credit or refund after filing your return, keep records for three years from the date you filed your first return or two years from the date you paid the tax, whichever comes first. Keep records for seven years if you want to get a tax break for bad debts or a loss from securities that are no longer worth anything.
In general, you should keep your tax return and any supporting documents until the statute of limitations has passed. Most people will have to keep their records for at least three years. But there are times when it’s best to keep records for longer. For example, if you want to claim a loss carryback, you need the records from the year before. The same is true for people who work for themselves or rent out their homes: records must be kept for at least seven years in these situations. If an asset has depreciation costs, invoices and other purchase agreements should be kept on file for at least seven years after the asset is sold. If you filed a fake tax return or didn’t file one at all, there is no limit. So, it’s best to keep business tax paperwork for at least seven years after a return has been filed. In the end, it’s up to you to decide how long to keep tax documents, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Lisa Greene-Lewis, a CPA and TurboTax tax expert, says that the IRS statute of limitations says you should keep your tax records for at least three years after the date you filed. You have three years to get any unpaid tax refunds. After that, the IRS will usually ask for more proof to back up any claims you made on your tax return.
If you want to file a claim for a loss from worthless securities or a bad-debt deduction, you need to keep records for seven years. If you forgot to file a tax return or filed a false return, the IRS can charge you at any time.
Keep tax returns and any paperwork that goes with them for 7 years (such as spreadsheets, receipts, and other papers that attest to the amounts you claimed on the form). Most of the time, the IRS has three years from the date of filing to check federal tax returns. There are some exceptions to these statutes of limitations that could extend the time limit to six years in some cases of significant underpayment and to forever in cases of fraud or refusal to file a return.
How long should I keep which records?
TIME TO KEEP: 3–7 YEARS Keeping this in mind, it’s a good idea to keep for three to seven years any document that backs up information on your tax return, such as Forms W-2 and 1099, bank and brokerage records, receipts for tuition payments and receipts for donations to charities.
How long do I have to keep my bills and bank statements?
Most bank statements should be kept for a year in paper or digital form before being shredded. Keep any records that have to do with taxes, like proof of charitable donations, for at least three years.
How long do you keep your records of money?
By law, banks have to keep most of their records for at least five years, and many keep account statements for as long as seven.
Should I keep my old bank statements?
How long you should keep your bank and credit card statements depends on a lot of different things. Most of the time, you should keep them until you’ve filed your taxes for the year and dealt with any fraud issues, but in the long run, it may be better to keep them for longer.
How long do you need to have bills for your home?
Bills and bank statements should be kept for at least two years. Insurance records should be kept for as long as they are valid.
How long should you keep your credit card bills?
The IRS says that it usually looks at tax returns from the last three years. But it only covers the last six years most of the time. In either case, you should keep credit card statements with proof of deductions for at least six years after you file your taxes.
When should I throw away my phone bills?
a year or less (except in a few cases): Bills for utilities, cable, and phones: If the bill is correct, throw it away right away. But if you want to claim some of these costs as tax deductions, you should keep them with your tax return (more on that in a moment).
How long should I keep my insurance paperwork?
If you use your insured asset for business, the IRS says you should keep records for three to seven years, depending on the type of document. However, you should check with your tax advisor to be sure. If you are audited, you will have to show proof of how you have used that asset.
What kinds of records must be kept for 10 years?
All spending items must come with bank records, canceled checks, receipts, or bills. You should also keep proof of any money you make, like sales receipts, invoices, or bank records. After these papers have been used, they should be kept in a file for at least 10 years.
Should I keep my bank statements for the next seven years?
Bank statements are the only way to prove that debits and credits were made. Either a hard copy or a digital copy must be kept for a year. You will be able to look at your bank statements online for at least a year. Most banks keep them for at least five years.
Do I need to hold on to the original receipts?
Supporting documentation includes sales slips, paid bills, invoices, receipts, deposit slips, and canceled cheques. These papers tell you what you need to write down in your books. You should keep these papers because they are proof of what you write in your books and on your tax return.
What pieces of paper should I keep?
Keep going forever. There are some documents that must be kept for the rest of your life. These include birth and death certificates, marriage licenses, divorce decrees, Social Security cards, and military discharge papers.
How long do mortgage statements need to be kept?
You should keep any paperwork about your refinance for at least three years, just like you should keep your mortgage payment statements for that long. Some experts, on the other hand, may say that it should be kept for at least ten years.