How can I get my tax information to my preparer securely?

How can I get my tax information to my tax preparer securely?

Tax season is upon us once again, and if you use a professional to prepare your taxes, they may have reached out to request your tax information and documents. Your most personal data is on these forms and might include your name, your spouse’s name, your children’s names, everyone’s social security numbers, your address, your bank account number…essentially everything an identity thief could ever want or need.

Kevin McDermott, CPA HeadshotSo, how should you get those documents into the hands of your tax preparer securely, without risking your personal information getting compromised? We ran this question by our Tax Manager, Kevin McDermott, CPA and below are some dos and don’ts for handling your tax documents:

DO: Use your tax preparer’s secure portal. 

Secure online portals allow you to upload PDFs and other digital documents to your preparer and are the safest way to send documents. Additionally, portals are the most secure way for your preparer to deliver your tax return. These portals require the use of a password and are only accessible to the preparer and you. If available, use any multi-factor authentication functions.

If our firm prepares your taxes, you can upload to the Tax Prep (2023) folder in our secure portal. Larger tax software companies such as TurboTax allow you to upload forms into their software – this should also be secure.

DO: Only send copies of your tax information to your preparer. 

If your tax preparer asks for physical documents, keep your original tax documents and send only copies. The IRS requires tax records to be kept for up to seven years. Rather than relying on your preparer to keep everything, hold on to those originals yourself. Many tax preparers have data security policies that require shredding documents immediately after scanning and will not store physical documents.

If you prefer bringing your documents in person to your preparer, we recommend setting up an appointment so they can scan what they need and return the documents to you.

DO: Provide your preparer with your IRS Identity Protection PIN (if you have one). 

If you are a confirmed victim of tax-related identity theft, or if you’ve requested one, the IRS will mail you a six-digit Identity Protection PIN (IP PIN) . The IP PIN changes annually. If you receive one, always pass it along securely to your preparer as they will need it to e-file your return.

DON’T: Email tax information documents to your preparer!

Repeat – DO NOT email tax documents. These days, it’s seemingly too easy for someone to gain access to your email account. If you insist on sending any tax documents or sensitive information over email, be sure to either password-protect the files or send in a password-protected ZIP file. Never include the password in the same email as the attachments.

DON’T: Mail tax information to your preparer without delivery confirmation.

If you mail physical documents to your preparer, it is best to use services such as certified mail with delivery receipt requested, or FedEx with delivery confirmations. Again, you’ll want to hold on to your original documents and only mail copies.

It’s a good idea to talk to your tax preparer’s office if you have any questions about their preferred methods of document delivery. Tax documents can be a one-stop-shop for identity theft, so always be sure to take the time and precautions necessary to protect your information.

Making News…

We continue to help various media outlets provide sound information to their audiences. (Some links may require a subscription to view.)

Dan Moisand,CFP® continues to write for Florida Today and MarketWatch, which are sometimes syndicated to other sites such as YahooFinance.

What’s the process for taking my RMD? – MarketWatch/Yahoo Finance

Retirement’s down the road: Is a CD the best place for some of my cash? – Florida Today

Do I still need to file a tax return? I hardly earned anything last year – MarketWatch

What are the rules for taking a 401(k) hardship distribution? – MarketWatch

Is giving my daughter money for a home opening the door to a big tax? – Florida Today

Are there ways to give to charity and keep the money in the family? – MarketWatch

What’s the smartest way to donate stock to charity?- MarketWatch

Business Q&A: My son’s 34 and considering a Roth IRA. What should he know about taxes? – Florida Today

What happens if a husband names someone other than his wife the beneficiary of an IRA? – MarketWatch

In the News…

As we have noted over the years, Charlie Fitzgerald, CFP® has been a part of the effort to bring financial literacy into Florida schools. A newspaper in Gainesville, the Main Street Daily News, tapped Charlie for his thoughts for a report on how Alachua County is preparing for the new mandatory high school Financial Literacy course. In addition, Charlie assisted CNBC with a story, “The Fed is expected to cut interest rates in 2024. Here’s how investors can prepare”

2024 Seminole 100Moisand Fitzgerald Tamayo, LLC was named to the 2024 Seminole 100 for the sixth time in the last seven years. The Seminole 100 recognizes the 100 fastest-growing FSU alumni-owned or alumni-led businesses more than three years old. Dan received his Bachelors degree from Florida State in 1989.

If you are a member of an organization in need of a personal finance speaker, we are happy to talk with your group’s organizers about helping out at no cost.


DJ Hunt, CFP® helped out with Financial Planning magazine’s story on rebalancing by explaining the superiority of the opportunistic methods over calendar based approaches.

Watch for this ‘phantom tax’ before taking Affordable Care Act insurance subsidies, advisor says – CNBC

Donating a used car may serve as a charitable gift this holiday season – CNBC/NBC10 Philadelphia

smarter planner podcast logoWhat Matters podcast promo graphicDan Moisand, CFP® continues to share his experience and perspectives with the financial planning community. In December, he explored the importance and growth of the CFP® marks on the “Smarter Planner” podcast, produced by the National Capital Area chapter of the Financial Planning Association. In January, Dan discussed his career path and what he believes about the future of financial planning with the hosts of the “What Matters” podcast. That show’s mission is “…to showcase best-in-class RIAs, Wealth Managers, and Investment Professionals who have built businesses that are changing the game in the field of wealth management.”


6.5 billion hours – estimate by National Taxpayers Union Foundation of number of hours Americans spend to get their taxes filed

The Space Coast is taking off!! According to one-way rental data compiled by U-Haul, more people moved to Brevard County than any other in the U.S. during 2023.

Will negativity be pervasive in 2024? This story, “Stocks, Bonds Drop in Tandem for Worst Start to Year in Decades” (Bloomberg), may be a clue. The date of this article is January 2, 2024! After just one day things are already bad, apparently. How bad? How far did stocks decline to prompt this headline? The S&P 500 index dropped 0.57%. That is far from a cause for concern.

55% of Americans have not saved anything for retirement and only 5.8% have accumulated more than $100,000 for retirement (Forex)

38% of Millennials have no life insurance because they falsely believe life insurance is too expensive. (LIMRA)

 Contact Us

Moisand Fitzgerald Tamayo, LLC is an Orlando, Tampa and Melbourne, Florida based fee-only financial planner serving central Florida and clients across the country. Moisand Fitzgerald Tamayo, LLC specializes in providing objective financial planning, retirement planning, and investment management to help clients build, manage, grow, and protect their assets through all phases of one’s life and the many transitions in between. If you have any questions or would like to discuss anything further, please give us a call or send us a note. If you are not a client and wish to receive emails notifying you of new posts – no more than once per month – fill out the subscription information in the sidebar to the right. For more frequent updates, follow us on FacebookLinkedIn, or Twitter.  

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About Dan Moisand

Dan Moisand is a fee-only financial advisor with Moisand Fitzgerald Tamayo, LLC. He is a regular contributor for multiple outlets, including Florida Today, MarketWatch, and The Wall Street Journal. His writing and financial advice have also been featured in Financial Planning, Investment Advisor, Wealth Manager/Advising Boomers, Forbes, Smart Money, and The New York Times, among other publications. He is the only two-time winner of the Journal of Financial Planning’s “Call for Papers” competition and has been named a top financial planner and advisor by multiple publications. Investment News named Dan one of the “twenty most influential men and women” in the history of financial planning. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for the CFP (Certified Financial Planner) Board.


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