What Tax Documents Do I Need to Shred?

Posted on: March 10, 2023


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When it’s tax season, you have a lot of highly sensitive information coming your way, whether you run a business or are an individual. While you need these documents to file your taxes by the deadline, you should know what to do with them after their time has passed.

This guide will help you determine which tax documents you can shred and which you should securely store. Handling these documents carefully helps prevent fraud, identity theft and other issues.

Tax Documents to Keep

Among all your tax documents, there are certain items you’ll want to save for some time after filing your taxes. Important ones to file away for the time being include:

  • W-2s: Keep your main tax documents, like your W-2, 1099 or whatever other forms you use to file your taxes.
  • Deduction items: If you have any deductions — such as business expenses like claimed assets or utilities — you should keep a record of them after you file your taxes.
  • Returns: Keep your returns for a few years after filing in case the IRS audits you. They will generally look at taxes filed within the last three to four years, so save your returns for at least that long.

You should also keep pension and estate-planning forms, car and home titles, and personal records like marriage and birth certificates, military discharge papers or citizenship information. Other documents to store include:

  • Payroll registers
  • Receipts from charitable donations
  • Earnings records
  • 1098s
  • Payroll tax withholdings
  • Contributions to tax-deductible retirement savings accounts
  • Monthly brokerage statements
  • Payroll tax returns

Make sure to store these documents somewhere safe and secure to ensure they do not fall into the wrong hands.

What to Shred Now

You can shred any other tax document that isn’t listed above. If you aren’t sure what you need to save, you might end up keeping everything. It’s easy to become disorganized and lose track of sensitive materials.

Tax-related forms you can shred after filing include:

  • Bank statements
  • Pay stubs
  • Investment statements
  • Petty receipts
  • Paid out loan documents
  • Anything that has confidential or personal information on it
  • Insurance policy documents
  • Paid bills, such as for your credit card or utilities
  • Related medical information

If you’ve heard that you shouldn’t shred bank statements and pay stubs, consider that these should be easy to retrieve online. You do not need to keep a paper version for any extended period.

Once you have filed your taxes, you can shred almost any paper document of something that you also have a digital version of. If you have old forms outside of the recommended retention periods, you can also shred them now.

Benefits of Shredding Tax Documents With TrueShred

When you need documents shredded appropriately, TrueShred is here to help. We have AAA certification from the National Association for Information Destruction (NAID), making TrueShred a trusted choice for your requirements. We provide secure on-site and off-site shredding for your confidential and personal data.

Additional benefits of working with our team include:

  • Reliability: When you schedule an appointment with TrueShred, we ensure punctuality. We know your time is valuable, and that’s why we arrive for shredding on your appointed day.
  • Secure and trusted: We are NAID AAA Certified and trained to handle the entire process for you, so there is no chain of custody issues.
  • Industry leader: We are an award-winning shredding company with local roots that proudly shreds documents for many clients, ranging from individuals and small businesses to government agencies and nonprofits.

Choose TrueShred for high-quality, convenient and secure document-destroying services.

Secure Shredding Services in MD, VA and DC

TrueShred is your NAID AAA Certified partner for secure, reliable tax document shredding at competitive prices. Our highly trained team members use industry-leading equipment to shred your sensitive tax-related material and then recycle the destroyed particles securely. Whether you need one-time or ongoing shredding services, we make it easy, safe and secure to get the job done.

We serve individuals and organizations throughout the DMV area with on-site and off-site shredding services. TrueShred will help you find the right solution for your needs. Contact TrueShred online to request a quote today.

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Dennis R. Akers, Audit Supervisor - Virginia Department of Taxation

”TrueShred was prompt, efficient, clean and extremely professional. I plan to continue to use your service and will highly recommend TrueShred to other businesses.”