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Making sense of 1099s, 1098s, and other tax forms

Here's what you need to know about tax forms from your bank
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Some of those tax forms sent from your bank can add up to big tax-deduction bucks. Make sure to keep them tucked away in a safe place until tax time.

Typically, financial institutions must provide these forms to customers and the IRS by February 28.3 The exception is Form 1099-MISC, which is due by January 31 if it includes non-employee compensation in Box 7. If the regular due date falls on a Saturday, Sunday or a legal holiday, the form is due on the next business day. If you haven't received an expected form a few days after the filing date, contact the issuer.

What other documents might I receive?

Homeowners may receive Form 1098, which lists mortgage interest paid during the year. Mortgage interest on debt less than $750,000 is tax-deductible for those that itemize their taxes.4 (Up to $1 million may be deductible for homes purchased before December 16, 2017, or were under binding contract before December 15, 2017 and closed before April 18, 2018.)5 Any real estate property taxes paid through an escrow account will also be listed on this form.

If you own an Individual Retirement Account (IRA), you'll likely receive Form 5498, which reports total annual contributions made to a traditional, Roth, SEP, or SIMPLE IRA.

How long do I need to keep a record of my tax filing?

Whether you file online, through a tax professional, or via a paper form, the IRS guideline is to hold on to your return, records, and receipts for at least three years but for as long as seven if your return includes unusual activity, such as a loss for a bad debt reduction or from worthless securities.6

I'm getting a refund. How can I have the cash deposited into my bank account?

Direct deposit is easy to set up for tax filers. All you'll need is your bank's routing number (the first nine digits listed on the bottom of your checks) and your account number (the second set of numbers listed at the bottom of your checks). The direct deposit option is available through your tax software — or via Form 8888 if you're not filing through a professional preparer.7

Excited to receive your tax time refund? You can easily track the status on the IRS website8 or by downloading the IRS2GOapp. The IRS issues most refunds in less than 21 days.

Important Disclosure Information

This content is general in nature and does not constitute legal, tax, accounting, financial or investment advice. You are encouraged to consult with competent legal, tax, accounting, financial or investment professionals based on your specific circumstances. We do not make any warranties as to accuracy or completeness of this information, do not endorse any third-party companies, products, or services described here, and take no liability for your use of this information.

  1. IRS.gov, "Forms and Associated Taxes for Independent Contractors," accessed September 24, 2019. Back
  2. IRS.gov, "Topic No. 701 Sale of Your Home," updated August 23, 2019. Accessed October 21, 2019. Back
  3. IRS.gov, "2019 General Instructions for Certain Information Returns," accessed October 21, 2019. Back
  4. IRS.gov, "Interest on Home Equity Loan Often Still Deductible Under New Law," updated June 28, 2019. Accessed October 21, 2019. Back
  5. IRS.gov, "Home Mortgage Interest Deduction," 2018. Accessed October 21, 2019. Back
  6. IRS.gov, "How long should I keep records?" Accessed September 24, 2019. Back
  7. IRS.gov, "Form 8888," accessed January 18, 2020. Back
  8. IRS.gov, "Where's My Refund?" Accessed September 24, 2019. Back
  9. IRS.gov, "IRS2Go Mobile App," accessed September 24, 2019. Back