Every tax return includes information about the taxpayer, including biographical data, filing status and sources of deductions. This section of the exam covers the initial work and information gathering required for preparing individual tax returns. Topics include:

  • Use of prior years' returns for comparison, accuracy and carryovers for current year's return
  • Taxpayer data – date of birth, marital status and any dependents
  • Taxpayer citizenship and/or residency status, and Special requirements for nonresident aliens (Form 1040NR)
  • Taxpayer filing status – married filing jointly, married filling single, head or household, and widow
  • Sources of taxable and non-taxable income – business, dividends, interest, wages, rental, etc.
  • Sources of gross income adjustments – alimony, health insurance, health savings accounts, moving expenses, retirement plans, self employment tax, etc
  • Sources of credits – child care, education, energy, retirement, etc
  • Sources of deductions – itemized, standard
  • Sources of tax payments and refundable credits (earned income tax credit, estimated payments, withholding, etc.)
  • Previous IRS correspondence with taxpayer
  • Additional required returns filed and taxes paid – estimated, gifts, information returns
  • Special filing requirements – foreign income, disaster areas
  • Foreign report and asset reporting
  • Exemptions, including dependents
  • Dates for tax returns and extensions
  • Minor children's unearned income (Kiddy Tax)
Income And Assets

Related Articles
  1. Taxes

    Tax Credits And Deductions For Parents

    Your children can help you save on your taxes with these credits and deductions.
  2. Taxes

    Get A Tax Credit For Your Foreign Investments

    The foreign tax credit provides a break on investment income made and taxed in a foreign country.
  3. Taxes

    Why Do So Many People Fall Behind On Their Taxes?

    Despite the threat of owing thousands of dollars to possibly the most feared organization in the U.S., millions of Americans continue to fall behind on their taxes.
  4. Taxes

    Form 9465: Don't Pay Your Back Taxes Without It

    This form can lighten your tax load if you owe Uncle Sam.
  5. Taxes

    Should Married Taxpayers File Together?

    Married couples that file a joint tax return can enjoy several credits and benefits that aren’t available when filing separately.
  6. Personal Finance

    Gay Marriage and Taxes: Everything You Should Know

    Same-sex couples now have a variety of tax strategies to consider.
  7. Retirement

    Top Tax Tips for Retirees

    Filing your taxes during retirement can be just as time consuming as when you were employed. We have some tips to help you out.
  8. Taxes

    5 Groups That Don't Pay Taxes

    Now that you've paid your share, find out who didn't have to pay taxes this year.
  9. Taxes

    Increase Your Tax Refund With Above-The-Line Deductions

    Find out about these deductions and how you can use them to lower your tax bill.
Frequently Asked Questions
  1. How Many Times has Warren Buffett Been Married?

    Warren Buffett has been married twice in his life, but the circumstances surrounding the marriages were unconventional.
  2. What's the smallest number of shares of stock that I can buy?

    Many people would say the smallest number of shares an investor can purchase is one, but the real answer is not as straightforward. ...
  3. What is an economic moat?

    An economic moat refers to a company's ability to maintain competitive advantages to protect its long-term profits and market ...
  4. What's the most expensive stock of all time?

    The most expensive publicly traded stock of all time is Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway.
Trading Center