As part of a series of reminders, the IRS has urged taxpayers get ready for the upcoming tax filing season. A special page ( https://www.irs.gov/individuals/steps-to-take-now-to-get-a-jump-on-next-years-taxes), updated and available on the IRS website, outlines steps taxpayers can take now to make tax filing easier in 2021.
Taxpayers receiving substantial amounts of non-wage income like self-employment income, investment income, taxable Social Security benefits and, in some instances, pension and annuity income, should make quarterly estimated tax payments. The last payment for 2020 is due on January 15, 2021. Payment options can be found at IRS.gov/payments. For more information, the IRS encourages taxpayers to review Pub. 5348, Get Ready to File, and Pub. 5349, Year-Round Tax Planning is for Everyone.
Most income is taxable, so taxpayers should gather income documents such as Forms W-2 from employers, Forms 1099 from banks and other payers, and records of virtual currencies or other income. Other income includes unemployment income, refund interest and income from the gig economy.
Forms and Notices
Beginning in 2020, individuals may receive Form 1099-NEC, Nonemployee Compensation, rather than Form 1099-MISC, Miscellaneous Income, if they performed certain services for and received payments from a business. The IRS recommends reviewing the Instructions for Form 1099-MISC and Form 1099-NEC to ensure clients are filing the appropriate form and are aware of this change.
Taxpayers may also need Notice 1444, Economic Impact Payment, which shows how much of a payment they received in 2020. This amount is needed to calculate any Recovery Rebate Credit they may be eligible for when they file their federal income tax return in 2021. People who did not receive an Economic Impact Payment in 2020 may qualify for the Recovery Rebate Credit when they file their 2020 taxes in 2021.
To see information from the most recently filed tax return and recent payments, taxpayers can sign up to view account information online. Taxpayers should notify the IRS of address changes and notify the Social Security Administration of a legal name change to avoid delays in tax return processing.