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Information Needed for Tax Preparation

Taxpayer Identification Numbers

Generally, the Internal Revenue Service uses Social Security numbers for identification; a taxpayer must include that or an individual taxpayer identification number for himself, a spouse and all dependents listed on the tax return.

Wage Statements

Employers provide workers with Form W-2, which reports wages earned and taxes paid during the year. Self-employed individuals may receive a Form 1099-Misc reporting compensation.

Statements of Unearned Income

All income, earned and unearned, is taxable and must be reported on a tax return. Common forms of unearned income are unemployment compensation, gambling winnings and interest.

Charitable Contributions

Taxpayers who make contributions to recognized charities may be able to claim a tax deduction. Keep receipts for all cash and noncash contributions, to list as itemized deductions on Schedule A.

Tuition and Education Fees

The federal government created tax benefits for education to help offset the heavy burden of paying for higher education. Students may deduct eligible expenses or use expenses to claim an education credit.

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