Tax Return Tips and Tricks

Posted: February 2, 2021

Updated: October 5, 2023

A Landmark member is on a computer researching tax return tips and tricks.

Tax season rolls in year after year, but keeping up with those ever-changing tax laws and rules can feel like a real challenge, right? That's why we're here to help you get ready with everything you need to file your tax returns.

Step 1: Pick your filing method

You can do your taxes yourself, use a service like TurboTax or H&R Block, or work with an accountant or other tax professional. For more complex situations, you’ll likely want some qualified advice.

Step 2: Gather your information

Here is a list of some key forms and documents you may need:

  • W-2: You will receive a W-2 that lists the amount of income earned and taxes paid from any employer that paid you $600 or more.
  • 1099: These forms cover other types of income including payment as an independent contractor, unemployment compensation, retirement fund withdrawals and interest earned from financial institutions.
  • 1098: These forms are filed for tax deductions and credits. You may use them for deducting interest on home loans or student loans, as well as taking advantage of educational tax credits.
  • Receipts: Collect any relevant receipts for childcare, healthcare, charitable donations, etc. that you may want to deduct.

You’ll also need to know personal information such as the social security numbers for yourself, your spouse (if filing jointly) and your dependents. Be sure to keep this information handy when you’re ready to tackle your taxes.

Step 3: Ready, set, file!

Now that you’ve rounded up everything you need, you’re ready to complete your returns. File by the IRS tax filing deadline.

If you're looking for more tax return tips and tricks, be sure to check out our year-end tax information page. We've compiled helpful information on a variety of tax topics, including how to set up direct deposit of your tax refund into your Landmark account.