10 Steps to Accurately Prepare Your Return


According to the federal government 60 percent of people use a paid preparer to complete and file their tax return. However, whether you do this on your own, or hire someone for help, being informed and having a local tax professional is beneficial for you, your family, and business. There may be a time when you could sleep relatively well at night without that sinking feeling gnawing at you that your money, your home, or even your freedom were in jeopardy from tax issues. We know filing taxes can be very complex, but Travis W. Watkins Tax Resolution and Accounting Firm has 10 steps to help prepare and file your taxes this year

1. Collect All Tax Documents

You will need to collect all tax related documents, including your 1099s and W-2s, as well as any bond or stock sales. Having this together will save quite a bit of time, but if not our staff of Attorneys and Enrolled Agents can pull Wage and Income transcripts on your behalf. 

2. Gather Copies of Brokerage or Bank Statements

These are beneficial because they may contain information that will alert your accountant to any tax-loss that you may have incurred since last year. Having the knowledge and expertise of our tax professionals to ensure your filing is accurate and in your best interest will help your business succeed. 

3. IRS Contribution Proofs

If you are under 50 years of age, you can contribute up to $5,500 to your IRS, and those over 50 can contribute $6,500. Make sure to set aside the proofs of these contributions. 

4. Gather Information about New Additions to Your Family and Social Security Information.

You need to get the Social Security information for all your children, even adopted children. Tax credits are available for your dependents.

5. Get any Work-Related Receipts Together

If you purchased something strictly for work purposes, this could possibly be deducted. However, you need a receipt to claim it. Recommendations on what can/can't be deducted is recommended from a local licensed tax professional. 

6. Charitable Donations

When you donate something to charity, you can include that in your itemized deductions, which lowers your taxable income. However, you have to have receipts to acquire this deduction. You will also need to provide cancelled checks, receipts, and letters from the charitable organization.

7. Get Your Mortgage Receipts Together

Even though your mortgage company is going to provide you with a 1098 that shows the interest you have paid during the year, it is still wise to save your mortgage receipts for tax time. If not, our team of accountants/bookkeepers can pull this information for you and help you file a successful return.

8. Tally Your Co-Pays

You can't deduct your insurance if pre-taxed, but you may be able to deduct the co-pays you are paying out of pocket. This includes documents from: pharmacy, hospital, Dentist, Optometrist, Etc..

9. Acquire Proof of Energy Efficient Items

You can receive credits on your taxes for vehicles, appliances and other items that are considered energy efficient, but you must provide proof of purchase in order to make these deductions.

10. Find Your Tax Return from Last Year

You should have a copy of the previous years return on-hand. If you are unable to provide the previous years tax return, an Attorney is able to pull your tax transcript.

Tired of feeling like just a number and waiting for months on end for your return to be filed? Taking a switch to Watkins Tax will let you have that personal feeling and knowing that you are in good hands with your tax burden. Don't let fear of the unknown stop you from taking ownership of your taxes. There are many options that we can provide to give you a good night's sleep again. Our team of Attorneys, CPAs, and Enrolled Agents at Travis W. Watkins Tax Resolution and Accounting Firm is here to having you feel stress-free with your tax issues and helping you stay on the right path with resources for the future. Sticking your head in the sand on these matters will only add to the pressure, anxiety, and financial troubles! This is your livelihood at stake. Call us today for your FREE consultation at 800-721-7054.

Download our Tax Preparation Packet HERE


Are you ready to think more clearly, take positive steps to solve your problems, and find creative ways to deal with the IRS? Download our FREE book, The Ultimate Survival Guide for IRS Problemshere!

Travis Watkins
Senior Tax Attorney
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