Taxpayers who didn’t save a copy of their prior year’s tax return, but now need it, have a few options to get the information. Individuals should generally keep copies of their tax returns and any documents for at least three years after they file.
If a taxpayer doesn’t have this information here’s how they can get it:
Ask the software provider or tax preparer
Individuals should first check with their software provider or tax preparer for a copy of their tax return.
Get a tax transcript
If a taxpayer can't get a copy of a prior year return, then they may order a tax transcript from the IRS. These are free and available for the most current tax year after the IRS has processed the return.
To protect taxpayers' identities, this document partially hides personally identifiable information such as names, addresses and Social Security numbers. All financial entries, including the filer's adjusted gross income, are fully visible. People can get them for the past three years, and they need to allow time for delivery.
Here are the three ways to get transcripts:
Request a copy of a tax return from the IRS
Prior year tax returns are available from the IRS for a fee. Taxpayers can request a copy of a tax return by completing and mailing Form 4506 to the IRS address listed on the form. There's a $43 fee for each copy and these are available for the current tax year and up to seven years prior.
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The tax information contained in this site is of a general nature and should not be acted upon in your specific situation without further details and/or professional assistance.
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