Tax Questions & Tips

What do I need to file my taxes?

December 1st, 2022 Dec 1, 2022 • Read time: 5 min

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Filing your taxes can be a confusing process. With the documents needed to file taxes varying from one situation to the next, it may be hard to know what to assemble. That’s why we’ve put together a comprehensive tax documents checklist to get you ready to file, no matter your employment or relationship status.

Tax document checklist

This tax documents checklist is designed to cover a broad range of different tax situations. Some of these documents are very commonly required, while others only apply to a small number of people. By going through this list, you will be better prepared to bring your tax documents to a tax preparation service, or to do them yourself.

Personal information documents

You will need documents that prove your identity as well ones that help the IRS know where to deposit your refund. These include:

  • Your date of birth and social security number
  • A date of birth and social security number for your spouse, if you are filing together
  • Bank account and routing numbers, if you will be receiving your refund or paying your amount owed by direct deposit
  • Occasionally: The Identity Protection PIN provided to you by the IRS. Please note this Pin is only provided on certain occasions. Not everyone will have one.

Information about your dependents

If you’re claiming dependents on your taxes, there are several documents and pieces of information that you will need to have on hand.

  • The dates of birth and social security numbers for any dependents you are claiming
  • Amount that you have paid for childcare throughout the past year
  • W2s for jobs that your dependants have held in the past year, if any 
  • If you are a non-custodial parent (a parent whose child doesn’t live with them most of the time), you will need Form 8332, which shows the custodial parent of the child has released their right to claim the child and has passed that right on to you

Information about your sources of income

The IRS is looking to understand all the ways your household brings in money — from full time jobs to alimony payments to unemployment insurance. Depending on how you make money, you may only need a single one of these forms to complete your taxes. In other cases, you could need quite a few. 

If employed by a third-party:

  • Form W-2

If unemployed:

  • Unemployment Form 1099-G

If self-employed:

  • 1099 Forms, Schedule K-1, and records of income to verify anything not reported on 1099-NEC or 1099 MISC
  • Records of business-related expenses in the form of credit card statements, check registers, and receipts
  • Information about business-use assets – things like their cost and date when they started being used
  • If applicable, information about your home office
  • A record of any estimated tax payments that have been made (Form 1040-ES)

If you have any investments, savings, or dividends:

  • Income from sales of property or stock (1099-S, 1099-B)
  • Interest on dividend income (1099-DIV, 1099-INT, 1099-OID)
  • A record of any transactions involving cryptocurrency (Bitcoin, etc.)
  • If you’ve bought property, dates of when you bought it and how much you paid
  • A record of any estimated tax payments you’ve made (Form 1040-ES)
  • Reimbursements from health savings accounts or long-term care (1099-LTC or 1099-SA)
  • Receipts for expenses from your investments

If you have retirement income:

  • Proof of any RRB (Railroad retirement Board) or social security income – (RRB-1099, SSA-1099)
  • Any contributions to an IRA that have already been taxed
  • Any income from an IRA, annuity, or pension (1099-R)

If you have rental income:

  • Records of any expenses and income
  • Information about your rental assets, including details like their cost and the date when they started being in service
  • A record of any estimated tax payments you have already made (1040-ES)

Furthermore, if you have income from any of the below sources, you will need to gather associated receipts, statements, and certificates:

  • Gambling
  • Prizes/rewards
  • Jury duty
  • Hobby income
  • Income from royalties
  • Alimony payments
  • Income from a trust
  • State tax refunds

Potential deductions

Deductions can vary widely from one person to the next. There’s a decent chance that many of these documents won’t apply to your personal situation. However, if you have expenses that you think should qualify you for a deduction, make sure to bring in all associated paperwork and discuss it with your tax filing professional.  

Medical expenses:

  • Records of amount paid out of pocket for insurance or healthcare
  • Records of amount paid for insurance premiums, if outside of an employer provided plan

Health insurance:

  • If you enrolled in a plan through the insurance marketplace, you will need Form 1095-A to qualify for a deduction


  •  Records of payment to a baby-sitter if they were taking care of your child (under 13) while you were at work
  • Records of payment to a licensed family day care or day care center for care of your infant or preschooler


  • Records of real estate/personal property taxes
  • Mortgage interest statements (Form 1098)
  • Records of energy-saving improvements to your home (solar panels, etc.)

Educational expenses:

  • Receipts for qualifying educational expenses
  • Records of student loan payments (Form 1098-E)
  • Records for any fellowships or scholarships received
  • Form 1098-T from educational organizations

Teacher expenses (K-12):

  • Receipts for classroom-related expenses

Retirement or other savings:

  • IRA contributions (Form 5498)
  • HSA contributions (Form 5498-SA)

State and local taxes

  • Record of personal property tax or sales tax paid on vehicles
  • Income or sales tax paid for state and local purchases

Charitable donations:

  • Records of cash donated to charitable organizations (churches, schools, etc.)
  • Records or receipts for non-cash charitable donations
  • Mileage driven for medical/charitable purposes

Disaster Relief:

  • Location where you owned affected property
  • Records of FEMA assistance
  • Records of property loss, rebuilding costs, and insurance reimbursements

When you’re figuring out what you need for your taxes, reach for this checklist to make sure you don’t miss a thing! Bookmark or print this page for your records.

Let Sun Loan help you file your taxes next tax season

Putting together all the documents that you need for your taxes can be stressful – that’s why we’re here to help. Choose whether you want to file in-person at a local office, handle all your document uploads online, or a combination of the two. No matter your preferred way to file, our seasoned experts are here to guide you through the process. 

Learn more about our tax preparation services and get some peace of mind today.

Author – Jamie Lewton

Jamie Lewton is a consumer finance specialist who has built her career with the Sun Loan team. Jamie’s decade plus in the finance sector began with a role as a Consumer Loan Specialist at Sun Loan. ... Read more »

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