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GoodDeeds Tip of the Month
March 2011
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GoodDeeds LLC
502 Crafts Street Newton, MA 02465

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Focus On: Your Documents - To Keep or Not to Keep


If your tax preparation is underway, do you find yourself drowning in a sea of financial records? You have W-2's, K-1's, 1099's, and lots of other documents to wade through. However, what happens when you are done with them?  Which ones do you need and for how long? Check out these answers to stay afloat!  


Tax-Returns and any supporting documents such as receipts, 1099's, and real estate closing statements should be kept for seven years. If you are in doubt, for any reason, consult a tax accountant. 


 Investment Records, in the form of your monthly statements, can be shred once you receive your year-end summary.  Those summaries should be retained for as long as you own the securities. Then, hold on to them for another seven years as you will need them to prove capital gains and losses information. 


 Bank and Credit Card Statements are to be saved for one year, unless they include tax-related transactions. In that case, they should be kept for seven years. If by chance you misplace your statement, no need to be concerned. You can always retrieve it from the bank or on-line.


 Pay Checks can be thrown out at the end of the calendar year after you have reconciled them with your W-2.


 Bills that have a tax implication fall into the seven year retention rule. However, if it's a bill that is not tax-deductible, keep it for one month, until the next bill arrives.


 W-2 Forms are your best estimate of your earnings and entitlements, so they should be retained until you begin claiming Social Security. 


Now managing all these financial records will be smooth sailing. But if your sea of papers seems too overwhelming, contact GoodDeeds to help you get it all organized. And, for those important documents that need to be notarized, you can count on GoodDeeds for that, too as we have a notary on staff. From organizing to notarizing, GoodDeeds is your safe harbor.



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