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Helping Clients Get a Tax Transcript

One of the latest “Summertime Tax Tips” from the IRS included information about requesting a transcript or copy of the prior-year tax return. Aside from using these tax records to file for home or business loans, they are particularly relevant to one of the most pressing summertime concerns for students or parents of students: tax records could be required to file for a student loan. Whether your client is looking to buy a home, start a new business, or finance her education, getting a tax transcript is a fairly pain-free process. The IRS’s online Get Transcript tool reopened in June and will only require an email address, a mobile phone capable of receiving text messages, and specific financial information. If your client doesn’t have reliable, secure access to the Internet, a transcript can be requested by phone or mail. Regardless of the chosen method, a transcript will not cost any money and can often provide tax information for the past three tax years. However, an actual copy of a previous tax return will cost $50 and will require a completed Form 4506. The IRS provides several online resources, like YouTube videos, Podcasts, and written instructions for securing a transcript of copy of a tax return.

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