Chris Eichmuller, CPA, is a director at Corrigan Krause and the head of the tax department.
For many of us, 2020 was a year unlike any other. At Corrigan Krause, we are ready to help you get organized and guide you through tax season this year. Here are a few tips to help you get started:
1. Find a home for your documents.
Create a folder on your computer’s desktop to save your electronic documents to make it easier to send everything to your Corrigan Krause tax professional. If you’re working mostly with paper documents, “home” could be a shelf, drawer, or envelope to hold all of the documents you’ll need during tax season. Click here for our checklist.
2. Double-check that you have all of the necessary documentation.
These documents might include W-2s, 1090s, Profit/Loss statements, Expense reports, gambling winnings, scholarships, and more. Consider the following:
- Did anything unusual happen in the past year regarding your income or deductions?
- If something unusual did occur this year, do you have the proper documentation for it? (If you don’t – contact the company to request the missing information.)
- Do you have any rental properties? (You’ll need those receipts!)
- Did you receive an Economic Stimulus Check in 2020? If so, we will need to know the amount. If you still have the letter from the IRS, you can include that in the documents you send to us. If you don’t have the letter, we just need to know how much you received.
3. Remember any charitable contributions.
Did you make any donations in the past year- cash or non-cash? Find those receipts, thank-you letters, and drop-off slips. Be sure that you include the value of non-cash contributions, like a clothing donation. With the passing of the CARES Act in 2020, even taxpayers who do not itemize can claim up to $300 of cash contributions to charity so send us all charitable contributions – even if you don’t expect to itemize.
4. Summarize your deductions.
When you come into our office, we will need a summary of any real estate taxes paid directly to the county (not through your mortgage), medical expenses paid, or political contributions made. We suggest making a spreadsheet of these expenses!
5. Take advantage of the client questionnaire!
Corrigan Krause sends out an annual client questionnaire to help you double-check that you have all the necessary information together. It’s an invaluable tool for tying up all loose ends before filing. You can find the questionnaire here.
Don’t forget to stay on top of your daily mail – especially those letters with the “important tax document” stamp – and your email during tax season. Once you have everything together, give us a call or upload your information to our portal. If you’re not a Corrigan Krause client yet, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to get started. We are looking forward to another successful tax season with you!