How Many Years Do You Have To Keep Tax Returns latest 2023

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How Long Do I Need to Keep This? – A Guide to Receipts, Statements and Financial Clutter at Home

In most homes, paper is a source of clutter. And it seems to mysteriously multiply by itself. But how long do you need to keep all those receipts, bank and credit card statements and other financial documents? Below is a handy guide In most homes, paper is a source of clutter. And it seems to mysteriously multiply by itself. But how long do you need to keep all those receipts, bank and credit card statements and other financial documents? Below is a handy reference you can use to manage your home paper trail.

Launch after one month

ATM and bank deposit/withdrawal slips

  • keep on file until receipt of monthly statement
  • reconcile with your statement to ensure that charges and payments have been processed correctly
  • if it is a major purchase with warranty, staple the receipt to the owner’s manual and file it for the duration of the warranty
  • if it’s a major purchase without warranty, keep the receipt if the cost to replace the item is more than the deductible on your home insurance policy
  • if for minor purchase without warranty, shred

Cash Purchase Receipts

  • enter your checkbook or computer software to make sure you account for all your purchases
  • if major purchase with warranty, staple to owner’s manual and file for duration of warranty
  • if it’s a major purchase without warranty, keep the receipt if the cost to replace the item is more than the deductible on your home insurance policy
  • if for minor purchase without warranty, shred

Credit card receipts

  • keep on file until receipt of monthly statement
  • reconcile with your statement to ensure that charges and payments have been processed correctly
  • if major purchase with warranty, staple to owner’s manual and file for duration of warranty
  • if it’s a major purchase without warranty, keep the receipt if the cost to replace the item is more than the deductible on your home insurance policy
  • if for minor purchase without warranty, shred

Start after one calendar year

  • Monthly bank/financial institution statements (unless required for a home business)
  • Brokerage/mutual fund statements (monthly/quarterly)
    • reconcile with your annual statement
  • Monthly credit card statements
  • Credit reports

    • you should request your credit report each year to ensure that all information is accurate and up-to-date, especially regarding any accounts you have closed during the year
    • requesting this file annually helps prevent identity theft, so you can see who requested the report and for what purpose
  • Monthly mortgage statements

    • reconcile with your annual statement
  • payslips

    • shred after reconciliation with your W-2 or 1099 (US) or T4 (Canada)
  • Telephone/electricity bills

Store for 7-10 years

  • All T4 forms – including T4E etc. (Canada)
  • Annual mortgage statements
  • Supporting documents (voided cheques/receipts/statements) for tax returns, including but not limited to:
    • donations
    • retirement account contributions
    • childcare receipts
    • alimony / alimony paid or received
    • medical fees
    • mortgage interest
    • payment of property tax
  • Forms W-2 or 1099 (United States)
  • Year-end credit card statements (if provided)
  • Year-end utility company statements (if applicable)

Keep indefinitely

  • Adoption Records
  • Auto/Home/Life Insurance Policy Information
    • retain purchase records for as long as the policy is in effect
  • Vehicle records (ownership certificate/registration)

    • keep for as long as you own your vehicle
    • if annual registration is required, keep only the current registration paper
  • Birth certificates
  • Business tax returns and supporting documents, if self-employed
  • Death certificate
  • Divorce Agreement/Child Custody Court Orders
  • Investment records clearly showing beneficiary information

    • buy records
    • sales records
  • Marriage certificate
  • Medical records
  • Children’s vaccination records
  • Military service records
  • Pension plan records
  • Receipts for major home improvements/renovations
  • Receipts for major long-lived purchases (fridge, stove, freezer, vehicles)
  • Religious records
  • School/educational records
  • tax returns

    • In the United States, the IRS has 3 years from the date you file your tax return to review your return for errors and up to 6 years to check your return if it suspects that you under-reported your gross income by 25% or more. There is no limitation period for an audit when deliberate fraud is suspected.
    • In Canada, the CRA advises you to keep your income tax returns, notices of assessment and all supporting documents for 6 years from the date you file your personal income tax return.
    • NOTE ~ I recommend keeping them indefinitely as they take up little space and can often be a valuable resource in the event of a dispute over items such as income tax paid, child support paid or received, and child support benefits. pension plan.
  • Will and/or power of attorney

    • must be kept securely in a fireproof safe or in a safe at your financial institution
  • Year-End Investment Account Summaries

Now what?

Now that you know what to keep, where are you supposed to store it all?

Set up a simple home filing system to cover the basics, and invest in a few sturdy cardboard or plastic filing boxes for information you need to keep long-term or indefinitely.

And one final caveat – when you decide you no longer need to keep certain documents, be sure to shred them and DO NOT put them in the trash or recycling. Sensitive financial information or personal information should always be DESTROYED to avoid any risk of identity theft which could cause bigger headaches than you can imagine.

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