How to Get an IRS Transcript or Tax Return Copy

Tax Return Copy

In this article, you will get to know what an IRS Transcript or Tax Return Copy is and how to get one. We would also tell you the different types of IRS transcripts and other associated information you should know.

Have you got an IRS Transcript or Tax Return Copy against the return filed? If not, this article can help you immensely. An IRS transcript or tax transcript is nothing but a summary of your tax return information. All taxpayers are entitled to receive a free copy of their tax transcripts from the IRS website. For this, you simply need to visit the IRS website, go to the “Tax Records” section and download your IRS transcript from there. This is the quickest way to get the IRS transcript. You can also get the same by making a request to the IRS over phone or by email. There are manifold advantages of an IRS Transcript or Tax Return Copy. You can use it to provide proof of your income to lenders while applying for an auto loan or a mortgage. from a tax transcript, you can have detailed information on your previous years’ tax returns. Also, a tax transcript can help you while filing estimated taxes. From the information included in it, you can figure out how much you will have to pay in the future.

Now, we will discuss in detail the different ways to get an IRS tax transcript.

How to Obtain an IRS Transcript Online?

Total Time: 25 minutes

A) If you have an Online IRS Account

🔹 Log into your account
🔹 Go to the Tax Records section
🔹 Now you can select, view and download the IRS Transcript or Tax Return Copy you need

B) If you do not have an Online IRS Account

You can request an online transcript online. Here is the process to follow:

🔹 Visit the IRS Get Transcript site.
🔹 If you wish the transcript to appear on your screen, you will need to authenticate your identity.
🔹 Provide your Social Security number
🔹 Enter your date of birth
🔹 Mention your filing status 
🔹 Provide your mailing address as mentioned in your latest tax return. 
🔹 Mention your email id, personal account number, home equity loan, mortgage, and home equity line of credit /car loan
🔹 After your details are verified, IRS will send you the Transcript

How to Obtain an IRS Transcript via Phone?

  • Make a call to the IRS helpline .
  • After verifying your credentials provided, the transcript will be mailed to you
  • The entire process may take 5 to 10 days to complete

How to get an IRS Transcript by Mail?

  • You can print a copy of the IRS Form 4506-T 
  • Alternately, you can also print the IRS Form 4506-T-EZ
  • Fill in the required details in the form
  • mail the form to the IRS
  • Your request will be processed within 10 business days.

What are the Different types of IRS Transcripts?

There are five different types of tax transcripts available with the IRS. Before making the request for an IRS Transcript or Tax Return Copy, we would recommend you ascertain what exactly you need and what type of transcript to ask for.

The different types of IRS transcripts are as follows-

🔹 Tax Return Transcript

A tax return transcript includes most of the line items from your tax return, including the Average Gross Income (AGI). However, it does not mention changes you may have made after filing your original tax return. Such a Transcript usually works for student loan lenders, mortgages and matters related to financial aid.

You can request a Tax Return Transcript for the current tax year as well as for the previous 3 years.

🔹 Tax Account Transcript

A tax account transcript mentions basic data such as your marital status, return type, payment type, AGI and taxable income. It also mentions the changes you may have made after filing your original tax return. Such a transcript would help you while confirming that estimated tax payments were applied. 

You can request a Tax Account Transcript for the current tax year as well as for the previous 9 years ( maximum, if requesting online or with Form 4506-T). if you are requesting by mail or phone, you can request for a maximum of the previous 3 years

🔹 Record of Account Transcript

A Record of Account Transcript provides the combined information included in the tax account transcript and the tax return transcript. 

You can request a Record of Account Transcript for the current tax year as well as for the previous 3 years

🔹 Wage and Income Transcript

A Wage and Income Transcript mentions your IRA contribution information along with data from your 1099s, 1098s and W-2s. You can request a Wage and Income Transcript for the current tax year as well as for the previous 9 years (maximum, if requesting online or with Form 4506-T). also, the current year information may not be up till July.

🔹 Verification of Non-Filing Letter

It displays the proof that the IRS has none of your 1040 records for a particular year. Also, the verification of the non-filing letter does not mention whether you were needed to file a return for that year or not.

You can request a verification of a non-filing letter from the IRA for the current tax year as well as for the previous 3 years. However, if you need letters for even older years, you must submit Form 4506-T.

How do I get My Actual Tax Return?

An IRS tax transcript is a useful document you can get from the IRS. However, it is not a copy of your actual return, along with the forms and attachments. If you need an actual copy of a previous tax return, you will have to fill out the IRS Form 4506 and send it to the IRS. You should pay $43 as the fee (not required if you live in a federally declared disaster area). Such requests may take a maximum of 75 days to process.

Is there any other Way to Obtain Tax Records?

If you used tax software before, it can help you obtain your previous tax records. Your software provider may have your tax records saved on a file ( of course, depending on the provider and the software program you purchased). If you hire the services of a tax preparer, he may still have your returns intact with him as well.

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