The most common forms are -
W-2 - You will receive one from each employer you worked for showing gross wages, taxable wages, taxes withheld, and any benefit contributions such as a retirement plan.
1098 - From your mortage company showing deductible mortgage interest, property taxes and homeowners insurance paid from your impound account and mortgage insurance paid. For a new loan the form may also show the points paid but not always. If you purchased a home in 2012 or refinanced your existing loan, you should take your final settlement document (sometimes labeled HUD 1) to your tax preparer along with the 1098 as there may be items showing on the form, such as points, that may be deductible.
1098E - If you paid more than $600 in interest on your student loan, your lender must send you this form. If you paid less than $600 you will probably not receive a form, but the information will be available online.
1099INT - If you earn more than $10 in interest on a bank account or a CD, you will get one of these forms. If you have an impound account that earned interest, you'll get one from your mortgage lender as well. It may come in the envelope with your 1098 so be sure to take both forms to your tax preparer.
1099DIV - Earnings from stocks and mutual funds are reported on this form as well as capital gains.
1099B - If you sold stocks, bonds or mutual funds, your broker or mutual fund company will sent you this form. It will tell you the number of shares sold, when they were sold and the amount you received for the sale. In addition to this information, you'll need to know the date you bought the shares and the amount you paid for them to determine if you had a gain or loss on the sale.
PLEASE NOTE - Brokerage houses usually include the 1099INT, the 1099DIV and the 1099B as part of an annual statement. Your tax preparer will need to see all pages of the annual statement to accurately prepare your return. It is not unusual for brokerage houses to send amended statements after January 31st. If that happens, you should take the amended statement to your tax preparer who can determine if your return needs to be amended because of the new information.
1099G - Taxpayers who got a refund of state or local taxes last year will get this form. If you took the standard deduction on your 2011 return, the refund doesn't need to be reported as income. However, if you claimed state or local taxes as an itemized deduction on your 2011 return, the refund will probably need to be reported as income. There are some complex rules about if and how much has to be reported, so be sure to take the form to your tax preparer along with your 2011 return and they will be able to calculate what's taxable for you.
1099R - If you received a pension or a distribution from an individual retirement account or retirement plan, you will receive this form. You will also get this form if you rolled over money in a retirement account such as a 401(k) or IRA or if you converted a traditional IRA to a Roth IRA. A rollover is usually not taxable, but does need to be reported.
1099SSA - If you received Social Security benefits, you will receive this form. It shows not only the amount of Social Security you received, but the amount that was deducted for MediCare and any federal tax you had withheld. Some of your Social Security may be taxable, depending on what your other income is.
1099MISC - Self-employed individuals who earned $600 or more will receive this from each employer. All earnings from self-employment must be reported, even if you do not receive a form.
1099K - A new form being sent by credit card companies or payment processors such asPayPal, Amazon and eBay reporting payments you received by credit or debit card. Forms are only sent for transactions over $200 and/or amounts in excess of $20,000 so even if you take credit cards, you may not receive this form. However, all income received by credit card is taxable and must be reported.
Form 5498 - This annual statement about your IRA shows any contributions made during the year as well as any conversions between a traditional IRA and a Roth IRA. Both of these activities may have tax consequences, so the form should be taken to your tax preparer along with your other forms. A seperate form -the Form 5498ESA - reports contributions to educational savings accounts.
Schedule K1 - If you received money from an estate, trust, partnership or S coporation you will receive this form. Income from these sources is usually taxable. It is not unusual for these forms to come after the January 31st deadline because of the complexity of preparing the underlying return. If you know you will receive a K1, you should discuss with your tax preparer the possibility of filing an extension and/or an amendment, rather than waiting for it to arrive.
The IRS requires professional tax preparers to use these forms to prepare your income tax return. Substitutes such as your final paystub cannot be relied upon so be sure to keep a close watch on your mail box and your email over the next couple of weeks to insure you have all the information you will need to properly calculate your 2012 return.