Saturday, July 21, 2007

Obtaining a Copy of a Prior Year Return

The IRS has a special form for requesting a photocopy of a previously processed tax return and attachments. If you need to obtain a copy of a prior year return, complete Form 4506, Request for Copy of Tax Return, and mail it, along with an IRS processing fee of $39 for each tax period requested, to the IRS address listed on the form for your area.

Unless the IRS has lost or misplaced your tax return, copies are generally available for the current and past 6 years.

If you need a copy of your tax return to obtain a loan, you may be able to use a tax return transcript, instead of a copy of your actual return. A tax return transcript shows most line items from the tax return as it was originally filed, including any accompanying forms and schedules. It does not reflect any changes you, your representative or the IRS made after the return was filed.

If you, your representative or the IRS has made adjustments to your return, you may want a tax account transcript as this will shows any adjustments made after your original tax return was filed. A tax account transcript shows basic data, including marital status, type of return filed, adjusted gross income and taxable income.

The IRS does not charge a fee for transcripts. You can request a transcript by completing Form 4506-T, Request for Transcript of Tax Return. Transcripts are available for the current and three prior calendar years.

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