Are you eager to spring clean your stacks of records? Not so fast. While you can safely dispose of some records eventually, all employment tax records must be kept by businesses for at least four years after filing the fourth quarter for the year. They must be available for IRS review upon request.

Among other things, the tax records you maintain should include:

  • your employer identification number
  • amounts and dates of all wage, annuity and pension payments
  • names, addresses, and Social Security numbers of employees and recipients
  • dates of employment

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It is important to hold onto your business records in case of an IRS audit or other examination. Retaining unnecessary records will soon exceed storage space available for most businesses. Therefore, you may wish to establish a retention schedule that takes into account state and federal regulations, as well as industry standards.

The retention periods are intended as a general guideline only.

LBMC tax tips are provided as an informational and educational service for clients and friends of the firm. The communication is high-level and should not be considered as legal or tax advice to take any specific action. Individuals should consult with their personal tax or legal advisors before making any tax or legal-related decisions. In addition, the information and data presented are based on sources believed to be reliable, but we do not guarantee their accuracy or completeness. The information is current as of the date indicated and is subject to change without notice.