Annual Shred Day 2014
Saturday, April 26
The following information is meant to serve as a guide for determining which documents are appropriate to retain and those that may safely be destroyed:
Tax Return – Seven Years. The IRS has up to three years to audit your filed returns; they may go back six years in suspected fraudulent cases.
Paycheck Stubs – One Year. Once you receive your annual W-2, ensure it matches up with your information and then shred your stubs. Keep the W-2 with your filed tax return.
IRA Contributions – Permanently.
Bank Records – At Least One Year.
Brokerage Statements – At Least One Year. Keep your annual statements until you sell the securities. Keep all sale and purchase confirmations that will not be reflected on your statements for the specific tax year.
Retirement Savings Plan Statements Keep Annual Summaries Until You Retire or Close the Account.
Bills – One Year. However, for larger purchases (jewelry, cars, computers), bills should be kept in your insurance file for proof of their value.
House Records – Six Years to Permanently. All records documenting the purchase price and the cost of permanent improvements should be kept as long as you own the property. All records of expenses related to buying and selling the property should be kept for at least six years after the final sale.
Credit Card Receipts/Statements – Monthly. Keep receipts until the monthly statement arrives. Shred the receipts if the two match up. Keep the statements if tax-related expenses are documented. Otherwise, shred the statement.
Insurance & Estate Planning Documentation Keep While In Force or Effective.
This list may not be a complete description of the documents available for shredding or their retention requirements.