Organized tax records make preparing a complete and accurate tax return easier. It helps avoid errors that lead to processing and refund delays. Individuals should have all their tax information available before filing to ensure the return is complete and accurate. They should notify the IRS if their address changes and notify the Social Security Administration of a legal name change. Remember, most income is taxable. Recordkeeping for individuals includes:
Income documents can help individuals determine if they're eligible for deductions or credits. Additionally, people who need to reconcile their advance payments of the Child Tax Credit and Premium Tax Credit will need their related 2021 information. Those who received third Economic Impact Payments and think they qualify for an additional amount will need their stimulus payment and plus-up amounts to figure and claim the 2021 Recovery Rebate Credit.
Individuals may want to consider adjusting their withholding if they owed taxes or received a large refund the previous year. Changing withholding can help avoid a tax bill or let individuals keep more money each payday. Life changes – getting married or divorced, welcoming a child or taking on a second job – may also be reasons to change withholding. Taxpayers might think about completing a new Form W-4, Employee's Withholding Certificate, each year and when personal or financial situations change.
People also need to consider estimated tax payments. Individuals who receive a substantial amount of non-wage income like self-employment income, investment income, taxable Social Security benefits and in some instances, pension and annuity income should make quarterly estimated tax payments. The last payment for 2021 is due on Jan. 18, 2022.