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Tax Transcripts

Tax Transcripts

Bankruptcy Lawyer Assisting Residents of Chicago and Surrounding Areas

Chapter 7 bankruptcy is sometimes referred to as “liquidation” bankruptcy, because it involves the dissolution of the debtor’s non-exempt assets to pay off their debts. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is often a good option for people with little or no disposable income, as it can provide a fresh start by wiping out most of their unsecured debts. If you have mostly credit card debt, medical bills and unsecured loans, this may be the best option for you. 

If you intend to file for bankruptcy, you should be prepared to provide all of your tax documents. The process is overseen by a bankruptcy trustee, who will want to verify your income, as well as your expenses and other financial transactions. At our firm, Chicago bankruptcy attorney Rae Kaplan can help make sure that you comply with the legal requirements during bankruptcy, including obtaining and providing tax transcripts. These provide evidence to the bankruptcy court and trustee that you filed your taxes.

Despite these differences, every situation is unique, and the decision to file for bankruptcy should be made with the help of an experienced bankruptcy attorney.

Providing Tax Transcripts

You are required to provide evidence that you have filed your federal and state income taxes for the last three years in Chapter 7 bankruptcy cases and the last four years in Chapter 13 cases. People who are required to file tax returns but have failed to do so are ineligible for bankruptcy relief.

Bankruptcy is overseen by a trustee, who has a duty to investigate your financial affairs. The trustee may require you to submit copies or transcripts of your tax returns in order to prove that you filed returns. You may ask for free transcripts of your income tax return by filing a form 4506-T with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) or by calling and asking for a tax transcript through the IRS Automated Delivery Service at 1-800-829-1040. You will be asked to enter your Social Security Number, your address, and the year of the return for which you are requesting a transcript.
When you ask for transcripts by using Form 4506-T, you may receive them at any address, and they may be mailed directly to the trustee’s attention within 10-15 days of receiving the request. When you ask for tax transcripts through the Automated Delivery Service, you will receive a tax transcript at the address that the IRS has on file as your current address.

A transcript is different from the return itself. It usually contains most of the information on your filed return, but it is not a copy of a tax return. You may get a copy of your filed return by filing Form 4506 and paying $57 per return. This process may take up to 60 days.

If you are trying to get your debt repayment plan confirmed under Chapter 13, you must establish that you filed taxes for the four-year period before the first meeting of creditors. You will need to provide a transcript of the return or a copy of the return to your trustee at least seven days prior to the first meeting of creditors. If you do not provide the tax return, no meeting may occur, and the trustee has the discretion to request a dismissal of your case or a rescheduling of it. If a creditor requests the return or transcript, you will also need to provide it to that requesting creditor.

If you fail to file a tax return that is due after you have filed for bankruptcy, the IRS may ask the bankruptcy court to convert your case into a different form of bankruptcy or to dismiss it. For example, it may ask that a Chapter 7 case be changed to a Chapter 11 case.

Seek Guidance from a Knowledgeable Chicago Attorney

If you are thinking about filing for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 in Chicago or surrounding areas, Attorney Rae Kaplan may be able to help you file and rebuild your credit afterward. Our firm also helps debtors address issues such as the need for tax transcripts during bankruptcy. The Kaplan Law Firm, LLC represents people who need a debt relief lawyer in Cook, Kane, Will, DuPage, and Lake Counties. Call us at (312) 294-8989 or complete our online form to set up an appointment.