which forms to include in 2015 tax returns


Employers, banks and financial institutions are sending statements in January that were involved in taxpayers’ financial lives last year.

Employers responsible to deliver tax documents have, by law, until Jan. 31 to get annual tax statements in the mail to you. Since the last day of January is on a Sunday this year, the deadline extends to Monday, February 1st.

While February 1st is the deadline for the 2015 tax year, it is becoming common for a few documents to be sent at a later date. It is routine for financial institutions to seek an extension when reliant on third party information. Therefore, if you held a non-retirement brokerage account I would expect your 1099 to arrive sometime after Valentine’s Day.

In addition to your mailbox, be sure to double-check your email for tax documents. Many companies nudged taxpayers in receiving their documents electronically in lieu of paper statements.

Common documents delivered to your mailbox and inbox include:


1095-B: It provides information needed to report on your income tax return that you, your spouse (if you file a joint return), and individuals you claim as dependents had qualifying health coverage (referred to as “minimum essential coverage”) for some or all months during 2015. Individuals who don’t have minimum essential coverage, and don’t qualify for an exemption from this requirement, may be liable for the individual shared responsibility payment.

1095-C: Employer-provided health insurance offer and coverage shows the coverage that is offered to you by your employer for 2015. It is used by larger companies with 50 or more full-time. You can use this to complete your tax return.


W-2: This is a common form that you must receive from each employer you worked for during 2015. Your W-2 shows how much money you made, how much income tax was withheld and Social Security and Medicare taxes paid. It also includes any benefit contributions including retirement plans, medical accounts and child care reimbursement plans.

1099 Series: There are over a dozen versions of 1099s, fortunately most taxpayers only receive a few. These include:

  • 1099-INT: Financial institutions are required to file this form if they paid you more than $10 in interest during the year.
    1099-DIV: This form must be filed if you own stock or other securities and received over $10 in distributions, such as dividends, capital gain distributions, or nontaxable distributions.
    1099-B: Financial institutions or mutual fund companies must file this form when stock is sold. It shows the amount and date of the sale, and provides cost basis information.
    1099-R: You must file this form when you get a distribution from a retirement plan, such as an IRS, Roth IRA, 401(k) plan.
    1099-G: This form is used to report unemployment compensation, state and local income tax refunds, agricultural payments, and taxable grants.


1098 Series: Four common forms that may help reduce your taxable income:

  • 1098: Reports the amount of interest and mortgage-related expenses paid on a mortgage during the tax year
    1098-C: Details donations of vehicles, boats and airplanes
    1098-E: Reports the amount of interest paid on qualified student loans
    1098-T: Outlines the amount of tuition and other fees paid during the tax year

Understanding your financial situation can help you identify which tax documents to expect. In the meantime, simply gather them up and place them all in a folder until Valentines Day. Before you contact your tax preparer, review your tax documents to ensure you have everything you anticipate.