Business Tax Preparation

how much tax preparation

Updated for Tax Year 2014


Doing your business tax return? We've got tips for you on which records you should have at your fingertips, including last year's return, payroll reports and depreciation schedules.

Gather necessary information

Last year's business tax return

Rather not remind yourself of all the tax you paid last year? Understandable, but you still need to dig out your previous year’s return. It provides valuable information and can serve as a good roadmap for making your way through this year's return. For example, if you are preparing your own return for the first time, your prior-year return can verify:

  • The method you use to track your business finances (cash versus accrual)
  • Your federal tax ID number
  • The date you incorporated or started your business
  • The date you elected to become an S corporation
  • Your business code number and business activity descriptions
  • The method you use to track your inventory (if applicable)
  • Your beginning balance sheet amounts (these are the same as the prior year's ending balance sheet amounts)
  • Shareholder or partner information if there are no changes

Your previous year's return also is a great comparison tool once you think you have completed your current-year tax return. It can raise red flags about possible missed deductions, or items that seem

unusually large or small in comparison to the prior year.

Articles of incorporation

Partnership agreement

Accounting records

Bank statements

Credit card statements

Payroll reports

Detail of asset purchases

Depreciation schedules

If you're preparing your own tax return for the first time, you'll need to enter the details of the assets the business has that it is depreciating as of the beginning of this tax year into TurboTax. The tax software will calculate the depreciation on these assets going forward. You'll need the following:

  • Description of the asset
  • Date put into service
  • Original cost of the asset
  • Accumulated depreciation up to this tax year
  • Business use percentage (if applicable)
  • Recovery period of the asset (3 years, 5 years, 7 years, etc.)
  • Any Section 179 Expense (or first-year expense) taken in the first year of service

Detail of asset dispositions

Vehicle information

If the business owns any vehicles that are used by employees or shareholders/partners for personal and business use, you'll need the following mileage data:

  • Miles driven for business
  • Personal miles
  • Commuting miles

Taking a little time to gather your tax-related documents will pay off, in time saved and frustration eliminated. And using TurboTax will help you maximize your business-related tax deductions.


Category: Taxes

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