request tax return copy irs

How Do You Request a Copy of a Tax Return? Free & Exact Copies from the IRS


How To Get a Copy / Transcript of a Current Or Previous Tax Return

You have two options when requesting a copy of a tax return you’ve filed with the IRS.
You can request a free transcript, or order an exact copy for $50.

Requesting a Free Transcript or Exact Copy of a Tax Return

Your free tax return transcript shows most line items from the original tax return. Most lenders will accept the free transcripts instead of the exact copies, which cost $50.
The exact copy of your tax return includes all line items as well as attachments.

How Many Years Back Can You Request for a Tax Return Copy?

free guy turbotaxThe availability of copies of tax returns depends on whether you want the free transcript, or the $50 exact copy.

The free transcript is available for the current year, and up to 3 years in the past. Exact copies, which you must pay for, are available for the current and last 6 tax years.

You can also get the free version of TurboTax here.

Tax Return Copies from the IRS: What’s the Difference Between Free and Exact Copies

Most lenders will accept the free transcripts instead of the exact copies, which cost $50.
The exact copy of your tax return includes all line items as well as attachments.

New coupon: $20 Off TurboTax – Deluxe, Premier, Home & Business Editions

How Much Does an Exact Copy of a Tax (return) Transcript Cost?

As of now, you can get an exact copy of a previous tax return for $50.

How to Request a Transcript of Your Tax Return

To request a free transcript, visit IRS.gov, and click, get tax transcript by mail. To get an exact copy of a tax return for $50, fill out tax form 4506-T, and follow the mailing instructions on the form.

Types of Transcripts Available from the IRS

The IRS also has a list of the types of transcripts, and whether you need to use Form 4506-T to obtain a copy. These types of transcripts include:

  • Tax Return Transcript – shows most line items from your tax return (Form 1040, 1040A or 1040EZ) as it was originally filed, including any accompanying forms and schedules.
  • Tax Account Transcript – shows basic data including return type, marital status, adjusted gross income, taxable income, credits and payments.
  • Record of Account Transcript – combines the information from both the tax account and tax return transcripts.
  • Verification of Non-filing Letter – proof from the IRS that you didn’t file a return this year. Current year requests aren’t available until after June 15.
  • Wage and Income Transcript – shows data from information returns reported to the IRS, such as W-2s, 1099s and 1098s

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