What Does a Retiree Need to File Taxes?

Reaching retirement age is a huge milestone. You’re leaving behind your career (and the commute), but that doesn’t mean you’ll be saying sayonara to filing taxes . Many retirees will still be required to file if their taxable income is over a certain threshold. Not sure which tax documents you’ll need to file? Get ready with our tax prep checklist for retirees. Check off the tax documents that apply to you and have them available when preparing your tax return. This will help you get through the tax season with minimal stress and your maximum refund.

Personal Information

  • Social Security number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number for you, your spouse, and dependents.
  • Date of birth for you, your spouse, and dependents.
  • Driver’s license or ID card for you and your spouse.
  • Identity Protection PIN (IP PIN) if you were assigned one by the IRS.
  • Last year’s tax return (if you filed). You may need to provide the previous year’s adjusted gross income (AGI) to verify your identity. This information can be found on line 11 of your 2021 form 1040. If you did not file or filed late, use $0 as your AGI.
  • Bank account and routing numbers.


  • Form 1099-R for distributions from pensions, annuities, profit-sharing plans, retirement plans, IRAs, insurance contracts.
  • Form 1099-D which reports capital gains or losses.
  • Form 1099-DIV rfor dividends and distributions.
  • Form 1099-G for state refunds.
  • Form 1099-INT for interest income.
  • Form 1099-K for payments and transactions from online platforms, apps or payment card processors.
  • Form 1099-MISC for miscellaneous income.
  • Form SSA-1099 which reports your Social Security benefits.
  • Form 1099-SA which reports distributions from a health savings account.
  • Form 1099-S for the sale or exchange of real estate.
  • Form W-2G for gambling winnings.
  • Other income

Deductions and Credits

  • Form 1098 for mortgage interest.
  • Real estate and property tax records.
  • Receipts for energy saving improvements. This includes tuition and fees required for enrollment as well as books, supplies, computers, and software required for your courses. Expenses that do not qualify are room and board, insurance, medical expenses, transportation, and personal living expenses.
  • Charitable donations to places of worship, schools, hospitals, and other charitable organizations.
  • Medical, dental and vision expenses including miles driven for medical purposes.
  • State and local taxes or sales tax.


  • Form 1095-A if you are enrolled in a health insurance plan through the Health Insurance Marketplace.
  • Form 1095-B if you purchased health coverage outside of the Marketplace or were covered by a government sponsored program like Medicaid, Medicare, or CHIP.

Frequently Asked Questions About Filing Taxes as a Retiree:

Do you have to file taxes when you retire?

Retirees must continue to file an annual tax return if their taxable income is over a certain threshold. For tax year 2022, single seniors who are aged 65 or older must file a tax return if their gross income was at least $14,700. If you are married filing jointly and your spouse is also 65 or older, the threshold is $28,700. If your spouse is under 65 the amount decreases to $27,300.

Is Social Security taxable?

Generally, Social Security is not taxable if it is your only source of income. However, retirees with additional income may have to pay taxes on their benefits.

  • Up to 50% of Social Security income is taxable for individuals whose combined income is between $25,000 and $34,000. For married couples filing a joint return, it is that threshold is between $32,000 and $44,000.
  • Up to 85% of Social Security income is taxable for individuals whose combined income is more than $34,000. For couples filing a joint return, your combined income must be more thanthat threshold rises to $44,000.

Note: Your adjusted gross income + Nnontaxable interest + ½ of your Social Security benefits = Your “combined income".

Which states do not tax retirement income?

Some states do not tax your retirement income no matter how much money you have. Alaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Washington, and Wyoming do not have an income tax, so your Social Security benefits, 401(k) and IRA distributions are tax-free. New Hampshire also will not tax your pension, but they do tax interest and dividend payments. In addition to these states, Illinois, Iowa, Mississippi, and Pennsylvania do not tax retirement income.

Are you ready to start your return?