The IRS has issued Tax Tip 2010-13 reminding taxpayers how to obtain transcripts and copies of previously filed tax returns. A taxpayer may obtain, for free, tax return transcripts, which are summaries, or account transcripts, which show activiy such as IRS communication, filed extensions, assessment, tax return filing dates, payment informatin, and balances due.
The transcript may then be used for lending purposes, if the loan requires the individual's tax returns. The IRS provided transcript will confirm marital status, adjusted gross income, and taxable income. Taxpayers may request these reports over the phone (800 829-1040) or by filling out form 4506T. The transcripts shoudl be received between 10 and 30 days from when the IRS receives the request.
An actual copy of a previously filed tax return may be obtained by filing Form 4506, Request for Copy of Tax Form. A fee of $57 per tax year will be assessed and the request will take much longer (up to 60 days). Copies may be obtained for the current year and the past six years.
Aaron's Take: The transcript may also give you up to a 6 month head start on preparing for an audit. Recently, more activity codes have been showing on transcripts which may indicate "return selected for audit." If caught early enough, you can begin preparing for an audit long before it is ever assigned to a Revenue Agent (auditor).
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