Keen records and for how long: Business taxes

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TaxMaMa, an expert in helping businesses manage their taxes provides insight into how to do it effectively. One of the main topics is 'Keeping Records and for how long should you keep those records.'

TaxMaMa, an expert in helping businesses manage their taxes provides insight into how to do it effectively. One of the main topics is 'Keeping Records and for how long should you keep those records.'

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  • 1. T a x M a m a ’s ® Tips Keeping Records – Which Ones and How Long? By Eva Rosenberg, EA
  • 2. State/IRS
    • IRS Requirements
      • Statutes of Limitations
        • 3 years and 6 years
      • Long-term ownership
        • From purchase to sale +
    • State – check with your state http://www.taxadmin.org/fta/forms.ssi
    © Eva Rosenberg www.TaxMama.com ®
  • 3. Personal Records
    • Tax Returns – forever and a day
    • W-2s/1099s and data used to produce that tax return - forever and a day
    • Cancelled checks and receipts – 7 years
    • Bank and credit card statements – 7 years
    • Gifts, loans, wire transfers deposited into your back accounts (make copies) – 7 years
    © Eva Rosenberg www.TaxMama.com ®
  • 4. Business Records
    • Tax Returns – forever and a day
    • W-2s/1099s, sales tax returns, year-end payroll returns, and data used to produce that tax return - forever and a day
    • General Ledger (QuickBooks files) (archive them) - forever and a day – or at least 10 years
    • Cancelled checks and receipts – 7-10 years
      • Note: Copy all checks received from customers
    • Bank and credit card statements – 7-10 years
    • Inventory and shipping records – 7-10 years
    • Net Operating Losses – 7-10 years after using up NOLs
    © Eva Rosenberg www.TaxMama.com ®
  • 5. Payroll Records
    • W-2s/1099s, year-end payroll returns - forever and a day
      • For government agencies or former employees
    • Payroll journals - 7-10 years
    • Employee/worker records - 7-10 years
      • Signed W-4s & I-9s – with copy of SS card and Drivers License
      • Signed W-9s with business cards and other back up
    • Time cards and other proof of time worked – 7-10 years
    • Time cards and other proof of time worked - for family employees– forever and a day
    • Payroll tax payments – forever and a day
    © Eva Rosenberg www.TaxMama.com ®
  • 6. Asset Records
    • Property and Equipment purchases, improvements and refinances – until 7 years after the sale of the property
    • Exchange property (Sec 1031), trade-ins, etc. – until 10 years after the last property in the series is sold
    • Gifts (be sure to pass along the purchase information) – until 7 years after the sale of the property
    • Casualty losses and deferrals (Sec 1033) - until 10 years after the last property in the series is sold
    © Eva Rosenberg www.TaxMama.com ®
  • 7. Sales - Gain/Loss Records
    • Keep the following:
    • Real Estate – Purchases, sales, refinances
      • Escrow closing statements (HUD-1) and deed
      • Loan summary, note and grant deed
      • Deprecation tables – regular and AMT
    • Investments and securities – purchases and sales
      • Certificates or confirmation of purchase
      • Split notifications
      • Capital gains distributions
      • Dividend reinvestments
    • Partnerships, LLCs etc . – purchases and sales
      • Partnership agreement and Investment docs and proof of your payment
      • Share received for services – documentation and proof you reported the income
    © Eva Rosenberg www.TaxMama.com ®
  • 8. Fraud, Neglect, Changes
    • IRS says:
    • You file a fraudulent return; keep records indefinitely.
    • You do not file a return; keep records indefinitely.
    • Claim for refund or amended returns – 3 years from original return; 2 years from date of payment; 3 years from filing date of claim
    • Claim for a loss from worthless securities or bad debt deduction; keep records for 7 years.
    © Eva Rosenberg www.TaxMama.com ®
  • 9. Ways to keep records
    • Expandable files – or files boxes
    • The Tax MiniMiser® - the paper way www.homebusinesstaxcuts.com
      • Remember to photocopy receipts on thermal paper or carbons. They will fade quickly
    • Intuit Document Management System for QuickBooks ® Accounting http://proadvisor.intuit.com/product/accounting-software/qb-dms.jsp
      • If you have lots of documents, get a good, fast scanner/copier with a feeder, so you don’t have to stand there all day.
      • This could require a part-time assistant
      • Be sure to store the back-ups in a heat-proof, magnet-proof safe.
      • Keep the software to read PDF files and relevant media with the backups.
    © Eva Rosenberg www.TaxMama.com ®
  • 10. How to dispose of records
    • Shred the records.
    • Period.
    • If there are too many to shred yourself, call a service to come out and shred them for you.
    • (Cost for 50 boxes was under $150)
    © Eva Rosenberg www.TaxMama.com ®
  • 11. After Disposal
    • There is a universal law –
    • Once you totally dispose of something – you will need it urgently.
    • Life is a fine balance between
    • pack-rat-ism and toss-ism.
    © Eva Rosenberg www.TaxMama.com ®
  • 12. Enjoy TaxMama
    • Visit TaxMama.com ® for more information
    • Subscribe to TaxQuips for free http://www.taxmama.com/subscribe/
    • Pick up a copy of The 100% Home-Based Business Tax Solution http://snurl.com/homebiz-tax
    © Eva Rosenberg www.TaxMama.com ®
  • 13. Enjoy Intuit
    • Enjoy QuickBooks’ webinars and resources for your business
    • http://www.quickbooksgroup.com/
    © Eva Rosenberg www.TaxMama.com ®