Form 4506, request for copy of tax return, is a crucial document for taxpayers seeking exact copies of their previously filed tax returns and tax information from the IRS. This article provides a comprehensive guide to Form 4506, its uses, costs, and alternatives. Whether you need it for your current-year tax return, government benefits, federal student aid, or more, this article has you covered. We’ll also explore related forms like 4506-T and 4506-T-EZ, processing times, and why mortgage lenders often request these forms. Discover everything you need to know about Form 4506 in this informative guide.
What is form 4506, request for copy of tax return?
Form 4506, request for copy of tax return, is a vital document for individuals who require exact copies of their previously filed tax returns and tax-related information from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). These copies are necessary for various purposes, including completing current-year tax returns, amending prior-year returns, claiming refunds, applying for government benefits, federal student aid, or even defending against an IRS audit.
Who can file form 4506, request for copy of tax return?
Individuals who need copies of their previously filed tax returns are eligible to file Form 4506. Moreover, it is possible to request a copy to be sent to a third party, such as a mortgage lender who needs to verify your income with the IRS. In this case, you fill out and submit Form 4506, and the IRS will send the tax return copy directly to your lender.
How to file form 4506, request for copy of tax return
Form 4506 is filed when an exact copy of a previously filed tax return is required. You can request various types of tax returns, including individual tax returns (Form 1040 series), corporate tax returns (Form 1120 series), partnership tax returns (Form 1065), and estate or trust tax returns (Form 1041). To initiate the process, complete Form 4506 and mail it to the IRS at the address provided on the form.
A fee of $43 is charged for each tax period requested, and copies are typically available for returns filed in the current year and the previous six years.
Other relevant forms
Forms in the 4506 series include Form 4506-T, request for transcript of tax return, and Form 4506-T-EZ, short form request for individual tax return transcript. These forms allow you to request a transcript, which is a printout without any attachments, of a previously filed tax return.
Form 4506-T is used when you need a transcript of your tax return or tax account information, Form W-2 information, and 1099 information. Tax return transcripts are available for the current and past three tax years and for specific returns, including Form 1040 series, Form 1120 series, and Form 1065. If you register online with the IRS, you can obtain it instantly and free of charge.
An individual tax return transcript can also be requested free of charge using the simplified Form 4506-T-EZ. A tax return transcript provides essential information, such as filing dates, filing status, adjusted gross income, and tax liability. It displays most line items contained in your return as originally filed, though it’s shorter than a full copy and doesn’t reflect changes made after processing.
In urgent situations where tax information is needed, transcripts can be acquired free of charge using the IRS’s online Get Transcript tool or by contacting the IRS directly. Transcripts are widely accepted as substitutes for exact copies by various organizations, including mortgage lenders and student loan agencies, for verifying taxpayer income.
Notably, the IRS introduced a new transcript format in 2019 to enhance security. This format protects sensitive information by displaying only the last four digits of your Social Security number and telephone number. Unmasked versions can be requested but are mailed to the address of record.
Special considerations when filing form 4506
When paper-filing any of the Form 4506 series, copies and transcripts of jointly filed tax returns may be requested by either spouse, with only one signature required. When using the “Get Transcript” option online, either spouse can make the request. However, when using “Get Transcript” by mail or phone, only the primary taxpayer on the return can make the request.
What is IRS form 4506 and 4506-T?
IRS Form 4506 can be filed by taxpayers to request an exact copy of a previously filed return and tax information. For situations not requiring an exact copy of a return, Forms 4506-T and 4506-T-EZ can be filed to obtain free transcripts of a previously filed tax return.
How long does it take to receive documents after filing a form 4506 or 4506-T?
If you use the “Get Transcript” option on the IRS website, you can download your forms immediately. When requesting a transcript by mail, it may take 5 to 10 calendar days to arrive at your IRS address on file. If you use Form 4506 to request an exact copy of your tax return, you can expect it to take up to 75 calendar days.
Is a transcript sufficient for my mortgage lender?
Transcripts are typically acceptable as substitutes for exact copies by mortgage lending agencies, as they provide the necessary tax return information required by these lenders.
Why does my lender want a form 4506-T?
Mortgage lenders often require borrowers to complete Form 4506-T as part of the mortgage application process. This form enables them to obtain a transcript of the borrower’s tax return information directly from the IRS. Mortgage lenders use this information to verify the income documentation provided by borrowers during the loan application process.
Here is a list of the benefits and the drawbacks to consider.
- Access to exact copies of previously filed tax returns for various financial and legal purposes.
- Useful for completing current-year tax returns, amending prior-year returns, and claiming refunds.
- Supports applications for government benefits, federal student aid, and income verification during loan applications.
- Can be valuable for defending against an IRS audit.
- Costs $43 for each tax period requested, which can add up if multiple years are needed.
- Processing times can be lengthy, taking up to 75 calendar days to receive copies.
- Transcripts are available as a free alternative, but they may not be sufficient for certain purposes.
Frequently asked questions
Can I request tax returns dating back more than six years using Form 4506?
Unfortunately, Form 4506 allows you to request returns dating back six years or fewer. For older returns, alternative methods may be necessary.
Are there any exemptions or waivers for the $43 fee associated with Form 4506?
In general, there are no exemptions or waivers for the fee. However, some specific situations may qualify for a fee waiver, so it’s advisable to check with the IRS.
How can I verify the status of my Form 4506 request?
You can check the status of your Form 4506 request by contacting the IRS. Be prepared to provide the necessary details to track your request effectively.
Can I use a tax return transcript for other financial transactions besides mortgage applications?
Yes, tax return transcripts are widely accepted for various financial transactions, including student loan applications and certain government benefit claims.
Why does the IRS use a new transcript format with limited information?
The IRS introduced the new transcript format in 2019 to enhance security and protect sensitive taxpayer information against identity theft and fraud.
- Form 4506 is essential for obtaining exact copies of previously filed tax returns and related information for various financial and legal purposes.
- It is used to complete current-year tax returns, amend prior-year returns, claim refunds, apply for government benefits, seek federal student aid, and verify income during loan applications.
- While it provides valuable documentation, the cost is $43 for each tax period requested, and processing times can be significant.
- Forms 4506-T and 4506-T-EZ offer free transcript options as alternatives.
- Transcripts are widely accepted by mortgage lenders and other organizations for verifying taxpayer income.
- The IRS introduced a new transcript format in 2019 to enhance security and protect sensitive taxpayer information.
View Article Sources
- About Form 4506, Request for Copy of Tax Return – Internal Revenue Service
- Request for Copy of Tax Return – Internal Revenue Service
- IRS Form 4506-T: Request for Transcript of Tax Return – California Department of Justice
- How Much Do I Owe the IRS? Find Out If You Owe Back Taxes – SuperMoney
- Tax Relief for Those Affected by Natural Disasters – SuperMoney