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Length of Time to Keep Paperwork

[Summary]How Long to Keep Tax Records and Other Documents Tax season is the perfect time to start culling your paper piles and computer files and getting everything in order. You've already delved into your financial records, so you might as well take the tim

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How Long to Keep Tax Records and Other Documents

Tax season is the perfect time to start culling your paper piles and computer files and getting everything in order. You've already delved into your financial records, so you might as well take the time to organize them.

Why, you may wonder, should you make tax season even worse than it already is? There are plenty of good reasons for getting your papers in order. One is that if you haven't yet completed your taxes, getting your paperwork in order will reduce tax-preparation anxiety. And if you have already filed your taxes, you'll want to know how long to keep tax records and other financial papers in case you're audited.

Suze Orman Resource Center : Record Keeping : Personal Financial Guru : Can I Afford it : Suze Show

Record Keeping

Keep till warranty expires or can no longer return or exchange

Sales Receipts (Unless needed for tax purposes and then keep for 3 years)

What to keep for 1 month

ATM Printouts (When you balance your checkbook each month throw out the ATM receipts)

What to keep for 1 year

Paycheck Stubs (You can get rid of once you have compared to your W2 & annual social security statement)

Paper Records: What to Toss,

Worried about pitching documents that they may need at some point, many people decorate a spare bedroom with boxes or large file cabinets stuffed with old bank statements, tax returns and pay stubs. (Okay, if the stash isn't in a spare bedroom, perhaps it resides in the attic, basement or garage.) As you finish up your tax return this year, take the opportunity to clean house. With a few key exceptions -- mainly tax-related documents -- you don't need to keep all those papers. And if you're willing to use online banking and create a digital archive of crucial records, you may even be able to go paper-free.

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Updated on October 6, 2016

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What records to keep and how long to keep them

Length of Time to Keep Paperwork

Keep too few records and you'll be stammering at the IRS agent at audit time. Too much and paper can take over your house. How much is just right?

6 Guidelines for Records Retention: Keep It or Toss It?

While setting up records retention guidelines with my clients’ one of the first questions everyone asks is “how do I know if I need to keep it”? The following guidelines will explain how long you are required to retain legal and financial documents.

A Quick Note Before We Start

The yearly “file purge” is a sensitive (and somewhat scary) issue for many, because there could be harsh consequences if you toss something that you should have kept. These are general-purpose records retention guidelines. If you have unusual or extenuating circumstances in your life please check with your accountant or attorney before pitching any important legal, business, or financial paperwork.

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For maverick entrepreneur Ian Cox, Africa is the last frontier of free enterprise. The former small-time hustler has been busting his ass on the continent for years, selling and moving merchandise. In 2012 he nabbed a lucrative United Nations contract to transport equipment from South Africa to South Sudan, a country on many countries' embargo list. The other problem: the journey north entails passing through countless checkpoints and dealing with bribe-happy officials and their nonsensical paperwork and regulations.

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