Weekly Tax Brief
- Published: 20 May 2021 20 May 2021
After filing a tax return, you may have questions. 1) When will you receive your refund? Go to irs.gov and click on “Get Your Refund Status” to find out. 2) How long should you save tax records? In general, save records for three years after filing although you should keep the actual returns indefinitely. However, there are exceptions to this general rule. 3) If you overlooked claiming something o n your return, can you still claim a refund for it? You can generally file an amended return to claim a refund within three years after the date you filed the original return or two years of the date you paid the tax, whichever is later.
However, the statute of limitations extends to six years for taxpayers who understate their gross income by more than 25%. You should hang on to certain tax-related records longer. For example, keep the actual tax returns indefinitely, so you can prove to the IRS that you filed legitimate returns. (There’s no statute of limitations for an audit if you didn’t file a return or you filed a fraudulent one.) When it comes to retirement accounts, keep records associated with them until you’ve depleted the account and reported the last withdrawal on your tax return, plus three (or six) years. And retain records related to real estate or investments for as long as you own the asset, plus at least three years after you sell it and report the sale on your tax return. (You can keep these records for six years if you want to be extra safe.) If you overlooked claiming a tax break, can you still collect a refund for it?
In general, you can file an amended tax return and claim a refund within three years after the date you filed your original return or within two years of the date you paid the tax, whichever is later. However, there are a few opportunities when you have longer to file an amended return. For example, the statute of limitations for bad debts is longer than the usual three-year time limit for most items on your tax return. In general, you can amend your tax return to claim a bad debt for seven years from the due date of the tax return for the year that the debt became worthless. Year-round tax help Contact us if you have questions about retaining tax records, receiving your refund or filing an amended return. We’re not just here at tax filing time. We’re available all year long. © 2021