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The 13 Most Common Tax Forms
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The 13 Most Common Tax Forms

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The 13 Most Common Tax Forms

There's no need to spend another second muddled about all the forms you'll need to file your tax return. Here's a quick resource to help you get acquainted with forms you may receive before and during tax time.

1. Form 1040, U.S. Individual Income Tax Return

If you've ever wondered how the IRS calculates your income taxes, this is your one-stop form to unravel all the hidden gems. Form 1040 is where you declare your filing status, take your standard deductions, claim lucrative credits, and determine how much you owe the IRS. This is your starting point to understanding the basics of the tax return.

2. Form 1040-SR, U.S. Tax Return for Seniors

This is a special tax form available for seniors to use as an alternative to Form 1040. Taxpayers who are 65 or over will experience enhanced readability and fewer complications with Form 1040-SR. Seniors will be able to easily document common sources of income such as Social Security, IRA distributions, annuities, and investment income.

3. Form W-2, Wage and Tax Statement

Hang on tight to your W-2. You'll need this form to determine how much you paid in taxes for the year. It will also show how much income you've made for the year. Every employer who has withheld income, Medicare tax, and social security throughout the year should issue you a W-2 by Jan. 31.

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4. Form W-4, Employee's Withholding Certificate

This form is used to determine how much federal income tax an employer should withhold from your paycheck. When you start a new job, you'll most likely receive Form W-4 to complete. It's also a good idea to update this form when major life changes occur, such as getting married or having a baby.

The IRS has made the W-4 completion process less cumbersome by simplifying it into five steps.

5. Form W-4P, Withholding Certificate for Pension or Annuity Payments

If you received a pension or annuity, you'll need to use this form to help you navigate the various rules for these payments. It's for resident aliens, U.S. citizens, or their estates. This form is used to determine the amount of federal income tax that needs to be withheld from those payments.

6. Form 1099-MISC, Miscellaneous Income

If you were paid $600 or more from a single person or entity during the year, you'll most likely see this form. A copy of this form will be provided to you and the IRS.

This form is used to report rents, royalties, and other income. Prior to tax year 2020, nonemployee compensation for independent contractors was included on this form. Now, self-employment income will be reported on a new form, 1099-NEC.

7. Form 1099-G, Certain Government Payments

The most common type of income found on 1099-G is unemployment benefits. This compensation is taxable and must be included on your tax return to calculate your total taxable income for the year.

This form also contains other government payments such as state and local tax withheld from any government payments received, taxable grants, and payments received from the Department of Agriculture.

8. Form 1099-K, Payment Card and Third Party Network Transactions

Individuals who are engaged in transactions with a payment settlement entity (PSE) will receive this form. For example, Uber and Lyft are considered a third-party network that facilitates transactions on behalf of the driver.

Rideshare drivers who earned more than $20,000 and performed at least 200 ride transactions may receive a 1099-K for their work. It all depends on the state you live in.

9. 1099-INT, Interest Income

Got interest? Be on the lookout for Form 1099-INT from your bank, brokerage, or other financial institution if you earned more than $10 in interest for the year. This form will report different types of interest, such as interest on U.S. Savings Bonds and Treasury obligations, interest income from banks and brokerages, and tax-exempt interest.

10. Form 1099-DIV, Dividends and Distributions

Dividends are an extra stream of income for investors, and they have to be reported to the IRS. This form will disclose your qualified versus ordinary dividends. You'll also find information about capital gain distributions and Section 199A dividends.

11. Form 1098-T, Tuition Statement

You will receive a tax form for paying college tuition expenses. These expenses may qualify you for deductions or tax credits.

12. Form 1098, Mortgage Interest Statement

Don't forget to claim your deduction for your mortgage interest. If you paid $600 or more in mortgage interest, you should receive this form as a reminder of how much you paid. But it's on you to keep track of your mortgage interest if it's less than $600, because your lender won't be required to send you a form.

13. Form 1095-A, Health Insurance Marketplace Statement

If you received health insurance from the marketplace, you'll receive Form 1095-A in the mail or online at HealthCare.gov account. This is needed before you file your tax returns. The form includes premium tax credits used and premiums paid.

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