What Tax Documents Do I Need to Shred?

Posted on: February 20, 2018

With tax season in full swing now, you’ve got a whole lot of highly sensitive information on your hands. It’s all very important, and very necessary for getting your taxes in order, handled, and filed by the looming April deadline. But once that time has passed, what do you do with your tax documents? Ideally, shred them.

Each tidbit of info on those typed and printed pages are a tantalizing temptation for a would-be fraudster or identity thief. But which documents can you safely shred, and what needs to be kept? The security specialists at TrueShred are here to help you decide.

What Needs to Be Kept?

Within all of your tax information, there are a few things that really should be kept for an extended period of time. Among these are:

  • Returns. Because the IRS can audit taxes filed within the past three (personal) or four (business) years, you’ll want to hang onto returns for this duration. Past the 3-4 year marks, however, go ahead and shred ‘em.
  • W-2s. Assuming you did not fail to file (in which case the IRS has six years to find out), W-2s, 1099s, and similar forms should be held for the standard three years in order to support your return.
  • Deduction items. Records of business deductions should be kept as well, such as utilities for personal businesses, claimed assets, and similar items.

Since you’re hanging onto these for a while it is absolutely vital that you keep them somewhere safe and secure. In fact, the word safe is rather apt. Don’t leave everything in a run-of-the-mill filing cabinet that any fraudster or irate wrong-doer can easily access and take.

What Can I Shred Now?

Basically, everything else. We find that many businesses, and even homeowners, hold onto everything related to tax time for years and years (sometimes their entire lives). But not only is this unnecessary, it’s also an easy way to over clutter and get disorganized as well as keep around far too much sensitive material.

Things you can shred now include:

  • Petty receipts
  • Bank statements
  • Pay stubs
  • Pertinent medical information

Some will argue with the shredding of bank statements and pay stubs,. However, both are retrievable should you need them again, and, in the case of a bank statement, this goes double. Modern banks offer full online access and support at all times, giving you easy means to get statements as far back as five years. So why keep them in your home or office where they’re vulnerable?

Secure Shredding Services in MD, VA, and DC

Need some help getting your out-of-date or unneeded tax information handled safely? Choose the specialists at TrueShred! We offer one-time and ongoing shredding services that use a single chain of custody. That means we’re the only hands that handle your sensitive information, and you never need to worry about theft or fraud.

Contact our secure document shredding specialists online, or call (888) 322-3218 for your shredding service quote today! We specialize in bulk shredding for businesses and can come up with a custom solution for you!

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Testimonials
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.”

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