• keep returns--how many years

    From MZB@21:1/5 to All on Fri Oct 15 11:50:51 2021
    I seem to vaguely recall that one should retain 7 years worth of returns/supporting documents. I have quite a few cartons with decades of returns. My wife has finally said ENOUGH, spurred on because ShredIt
    will be in town next week. So, I revisit the question in the name of
    family peace. Is it still 7 years...or??

    Mel

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  • From paultry@21:1/5 to MZB on Fri Oct 15 14:20:50 2021
    On 10/15/2021 10:50, MZB wrote:
    I seem to vaguely recall that one should retain 7 years
    worth of returns/supporting documents. I have quite a few
    cartons with decades of returns. My wife has finally said
    ENOUGH, spurred on because ShredIt will be in town next
    week. So, I revisit the question in the name of family
    peace. Is it still 7 years...or??

    Mel


    This is what the IRS says: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/how-long-should-i-keep-records

    Lifetime of experience rule of thumb: You generally won't
    need old records until shortly after the ShredIt truck departs.

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  • From Stan Brown@21:1/5 to paultry on Fri Oct 15 20:23:18 2021
    On 10/15/2021 10:50, MZB wrote:
    I seem to vaguely recall that one should retain 7 years
    worth of returns/supporting documents. I have quite a few
    cartons with decades of returns. My wife has finally said
    ENOUGH, spurred on because ShredIt will be in town next
    week. So, I revisit the question in the name of family
    peace. Is it still 7 years...or??

    On Fri, 15 Oct 2021 14:20:50 EDT, paultry wrote:

    This is what the IRS says: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/how-long-should-i-keep-records

    Lifetime of experience rule of thumb: You generally won't
    need old records until shortly after the ShredIt truck departs.

    Probably true. But those records don't take much space on a hard
    drive. I have all my tax records going back before 1990, scanned into
    nice PDFs, so if ever I need to lay my hand on something I can. And
    notice that the cited article repeatedly says "records", not
    "originals", so I'm sure that copies of the originals are fine.

    Scanning can be a bit tedious, but scanners aren't terribly expensive
    and you might find it worth the added expense to get a scanner with a
    sheet feeder. As for software, I use the free Irfanview, which
    interfaces with the scanner's software to scan multiple pages and
    produce a PDF.

    --
    Stan Brown, Tehachapi, California, USA https://BrownMath.com/
    https://OakRoadSystems.com/
    Shikata ga nai...

    --
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  • From Rick@21:1/5 to paultry on Fri Oct 15 20:22:55 2021
    "paultry" wrote in message news:skcgpu$2hf$1@dont-email.me...

    On 10/15/2021 10:50, MZB wrote:
    I seem to vaguely recall that one should retain 7 years worth of
    returns/supporting documents. I have quite a few cartons with decades of
    returns. My wife has finally said ENOUGH, spurred on because ShredIt will
    be in town next week. So, I revisit the question in the name of family
    peace. Is it still 7 years...or??

    Mel


    This is what the IRS says: >https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/how-long-should-i-keep-records

    Lifetime of experience rule of thumb: You generally won't need old records >until shortly after the ShredIt truck departs.


    I think the best one in the IRS reg is #6 - "Keep records indefinitely if
    you file a fraudulent return." This kind of goes with the IRS requirement that you have to pay taxes on illegal income. Not speaking from experience,
    of course. but I would think a person who files a fraudulent return and/or
    who hides illegal income is probably not too concerned about how many years
    of records to keep.

    For most people, I think the 7-year guideline, though technically
    unnecessary in most situations, is probably good enough and certainly easy
    to remember. Personally, I keep enough years of my personal tax filings to fill up one drawer of a file cabinet, though I have digital records of the actual return and attachments going back 30 years.

    --

    --
    << ------------------------------------------------------- >>
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    << nor can it used, for the purpose of avoiding penalties >>
    << that may be imposed upon the taxpayer. >>
    << >>
    << The Charter and the Guidelines for submitting posts >>
    << to this newsgroup as well as our anti-spamming policy >>
    << are at www.asktax.org. >>
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  • From Stuart O. Bronstein@21:1/5 to Rick on Sat Oct 16 02:39:45 2021
    "Rick" <rick@nospam.com> wrote in news:skcjhu$def$1@gioia.aioe.org:

    I think the best one in the IRS reg is #6 - "Keep records
    indefinitely if you file a fraudulent return." This kind of goes
    with the IRS requirement that you have to pay taxes on illegal
    income. Not speaking from experience, of course. but I would
    think a person who files a fraudulent return and/or who hides
    illegal income is probably not too concerned about how many years
    of records to keep.

    For most people, I think the 7-year guideline, though technically
    unnecessary in most situations, is probably good enough and
    certainly easy to remember. Personally, I keep enough years of my
    personal tax filings to fill up one drawer of a file cabinet,
    though I have digital records of the actual return and attachments
    going back 30 years.

    For most issues the statute of limitations is three or six years, so
    holding on to documents for seven years should normally suffice. But
    when there has been fraud, there is no statute of limitations.

    But there's also another issue. There is sometimes information on a
    return that depends on information from prior returns. And the
    string of that information can go on for many more than seven years.
    So there may be certain situations where returns should be kept for
    many more years, in case an issue comes up that could depend on
    information on a return from many years in the past.

    --
    Stu
    http://DownToEarthLawyer.com

    --
    << ------------------------------------------------------- >>
    << The foregoing was not intended or written to be used, >>
    << nor can it used, for the purpose of avoiding penalties >>
    << that may be imposed upon the taxpayer. >>
    << >>
    << The Charter and the Guidelines for submitting posts >>
    << to this newsgroup as well as our anti-spamming policy >>
    << are at www.asktax.org. >>
    << Copyright (2011) - All rights reserved. >>
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  • From JoeTaxpayer@21:1/5 to Stuart O. Bronstein on Sat Oct 16 09:01:14 2021
    On 10/16/21 2:39 AM, Stuart O. Bronstein wrote:
    "Rick" <rick@nospam.com> wrote in news:skcjhu$def$1@gioia.aioe.org:

    I think the best one in the IRS reg is #6 - "Keep records
    indefinitely if you file a fraudulent return." This kind of goes
    with the IRS requirement that you have to pay taxes on illegal
    income. Not speaking from experience, of course. but I would
    think a person who files a fraudulent return and/or who hides
    illegal income is probably not too concerned about how many years
    of records to keep.

    For most people, I think the 7-year guideline, though technically
    unnecessary in most situations, is probably good enough and
    certainly easy to remember. Personally, I keep enough years of my
    personal tax filings to fill up one drawer of a file cabinet,
    though I have digital records of the actual return and attachments
    going back 30 years.

    For most issues the statute of limitations is three or six years, so
    holding on to documents for seven years should normally suffice. But
    when there has been fraud, there is no statute of limitations.

    But there's also another issue. There is sometimes information on a
    return that depends on information from prior returns. And the
    string of that information can go on for many more than seven years.
    So there may be certain situations where returns should be kept for
    many more years, in case an issue comes up that could depend on
    information on a return from many years in the past.

    Just an example - rental property. I've bought and sold. The one
    property I own is now 7 years old. I'm happy to keep the tax returns
    that can document the facts regarding income, depreciation, etc, and
    that all losses were carried forward each year.
    Now, I suppose the IRS has transcripts of all prior years, but I'll keep
    my own copies as well.

    Another - cost basis for stocks. I don't recall when brokers were
    required to track this, but this is a recent change for old people (just
    looked it up - 1/1/2011. A bit over 10 years. Recent). To be clear -
    purchases are not reported to the irs, so a purchase is not on the
    return. But you know it's in that year's manila folder you want to throw
    out.

    --
    << ------------------------------------------------------- >>
    << The foregoing was not intended or written to be used, >>
    << nor can it used, for the purpose of avoiding penalties >>
    << that may be imposed upon the taxpayer. >>
    << >>
    << The Charter and the Guidelines for submitting posts >>
    << to this newsgroup as well as our anti-spamming policy >>
    << are at www.asktax.org. >>
    << Copyright (2011) - All rights reserved. >>
    << ------------------------------------------------------- >>

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  • From scott s.@21:1/5 to MZB on Sat Oct 16 19:29:55 2021
    MZB <moo@noway.prudigy.net> wrote in news:skc78o$5cm$1@dont-email.me:

    I seem to vaguely recall that one should retain 7 years worth of returns/supporting documents. I have quite a few cartons with
    decades of returns. My wife has finally said ENOUGH, spurred on
    because ShredIt will be in town next week. So, I revisit the
    question in the name of family peace. Is it still 7 years...or??

    I have every return I ever filed, back to the 70s. That includes a
    couple years when IRS had what they called 1040-PC that you could print
    at home on a dot-matrix printer. Though I have thrown out most of the
    j. k. lasser income tax books (tended to keep them because depreciation
    rules seemed to change every year back then).

    Keeping tax returns is the least of my storage issues.

    scott s.

    --
    << ------------------------------------------------------- >>
    << The foregoing was not intended or written to be used, >>
    << nor can it used, for the purpose of avoiding penalties >>
    << that may be imposed upon the taxpayer. >>
    << >>
    << The Charter and the Guidelines for submitting posts >>
    << to this newsgroup as well as our anti-spamming policy >>
    << are at www.asktax.org. >>
    << Copyright (2011) - All rights reserved. >>
    << ------------------------------------------------------- >>

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  • From ira smilovitz@21:1/5 to scott s. on Sun Oct 17 00:54:38 2021
    On Saturday, October 16, 2021 at 7:31:29 PM UTC-4, scott s. wrote:
    MZB <m...@noway.prudigy.net> wrote in news:skc78o$5cm$1...@dont-email.me:
    I seem to vaguely recall that one should retain 7 years worth of returns/supporting documents. I have quite a few cartons with
    decades of returns. My wife has finally said ENOUGH, spurred on
    because ShredIt will be in town next week. So, I revisit the
    question in the name of family peace. Is it still 7 years...or??
    I have every return I ever filed, back to the 70s. That includes a
    couple years when IRS had what they called 1040-PC that you could print
    at home on a dot-matrix printer. Though I have thrown out most of the
    j. k. lasser income tax books (tended to keep them because depreciation
    rules seemed to change every year back then).

    Keeping tax returns is the least of my storage issues.

    scott s.
    --

    In addition to the IRS guidelines, check your state's requirements. Some states add a year to the IRS guidelines (CA comes to mind).

    Ira Smilovitz, EA
    Leonia, NJ

    --
    << ------------------------------------------------------- >>
    << The foregoing was not intended or written to be used, >>
    << nor can it used, for the purpose of avoiding penalties >>
    << that may be imposed upon the taxpayer. >>
    << >>
    << The Charter and the Guidelines for submitting posts >>
    << to this newsgroup as well as our anti-spamming policy >>
    << are at www.asktax.org. >>
    << Copyright (2011) - All rights reserved. >>
    << ------------------------------------------------------- >>

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