By JC Leahy, MA, Accounting
His question for me was: "What the heck is a tax return official transcript and how can I get one." An official transcript from the IRS can be obtained free by filing a Form 4506-T, Request for Transcript of Tax Return.. It's a free service. Form 4506-T is pretty straightforward. Just make sure you tell them on line 6 what form you want a copy of. Be sure, also, to tell them on line 8 which years' tax returns you want. Here's a link to print a copy of Form 4506-T with instructions:
DOWNLOAD FORM 4506-T, REQUEST FOR TRANSCRIPT OF TAX RETURN
The problem with using Form 4506-T is that is takes considerable time to process. You can speed up the process by using the telephone. Simply call the IRS at 800-908-9946 and make your request verbally. If you are near a FAX machine, they will FAX you your transcript while you wait. In that case, be sure not to call them on the same phone line that the FAX uses.
There is a very similar form in case you need a copy of a tax return with all it's attachments. This if Form 4506 "Request for Copy of Tax Return". It sounds similar, and the form is very similar, but this one costs you a fee of $57 per tax return. A complete copy will show the details of all the attachments to your tax return while a transcript does not. Here's a link to print a copy of Form 4506-T with instructions:
DOWNLOAD FORM 4506, REQUEST FOR COPY OF TAX RETURN
There are all sorts of reasons why you might need a copy of your tax return or even an "official transcript." For example, mortgage loan applications, job applications, security clearance applications. You might want to bookmark this article, just for future reference.
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JC Leahy, MA, Accounting
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