I like to complete my taxes as early as possible and often end up waiting for key documents such as our 1099-R form and various bank and investment forms. The online availability of most of these documents does save time. I visited OPM’s Services Online  on January 22nd and was able to download my 1099-R annual annuity statement. You must call OPM at 1-888-767-6738 to register for access to this site.
For those of you not yet retired the 1099-R form is equivalent to the W-2 form we received while still employed with a few key additions. It lists your gross annuity payment for the previous year, the taxable amount – not all of your annuity is taxable, federal income tax withheld, any state taxes if applicable plus it lists your insurance premiums that you paid.
I receive many email messages each year at tax time asking how to get a replacement 1099-R form. It’s quite easy, especially if you have access to OPM’s services online. All you do is sign in and you can print out copies at any time. You can also call OPM to have one sent out. Everyone should be receiving their 1099-R in the mail shortly but if you don’t visit OPM’s web site or call to get a replacement.
Tax Time – FREE Tax Prep Software
I use Turbo Tax to complete my taxes for home and business and it makes the process easy and inexpensive. After using this program one time, each year thereafter, you simply import the general information from the previous year’s program and follow the questions they ask for each area of your return. They include a lot of support and you can electronically file your return. The software program is available at all of the office supply stores, online, Costco and Sam’s Clubs. I filed electronically for the first time last year and it is quick and easy and saves time.
If you decide to try Turbo Tax be sure to get the correct program. The price ranges from FREE for first time filers and students to $79 for their Home and Business product. I always buy the Home and Business version, most would use the Premiere especially if you own a home, and have income from stocks and bonds. Here is a list of the four available versions:
- Absolutely Zero (Free) – For first-time filers or students that want easy prep, print, and efile.
- Deluxe – Use this program if you own a home, have charitable donations to deduct, and have high medical expenses
- Premiere – If you sold stock, ESPP, bonds or mutual funds, want automatic cost basis calculations, and have rental property income and expenses
- Home and Business – If you have profit or loss from a small or home business, have home office tax deductions and have small business asset depreciation
Other programs are available from H&R Block and the government offers IRS Free File for those with an adjusted gross income in 2014 of $60,000 or less. Free File offers easy-to-use, brand-name software, tax prep and e-filing. You can even get help locating important tax credits.
We had a site visitor report a small problem with our FREE 2015 Leave & Schedule Excel Chart . One of the cells would not accept data. The cell was located on the schedule and it didn’t impact leave balances. We corrected this several weeks ago and the updated form is online. Please distribute this free excel leave and schedule chart to all in your organization. Keep the excel chart on your desktop and use it to track your schedule and leave throughout the year and to set target retirement dates that will provide maximum benefits when you leave.
We are currently looking for a retired federal annuitant with an extensive background in HR and federal benefits to host one of our Benefits and HR Forums. If you are retired, enjoy writing about things that matter to federal employees and annuitants, and would like to stay active and involved after leaving federal service, send an email to email@example.com  and include a short bio with phone number. As a Forum Host  you will join our other experts contributing articles, replying to questions from our site visitors, and help to keep our site up-to-date.
- Request a FREE Retirement Benefits Summary & Analysis . A sample analysis is available for your review. Includes projected annuity payments, income verses expenses, FEGLI, and TSP projections.
- Retirement Planning Guide 
- Master Retiree Contact List  (Important contact numbers and information)
- 2015 Leave & Schedule Excel Chart  (FREE Excel chart tracks actual leave balances)
- Survivor’s Guide 
- Estate Planning Guide (An 11 part series that will help readers prepare for retirement, understand basic estate planning techniques, and compile their personal “Survivor’s Guide” binder.)
Visit our other informative sites
- Federal Government Jobs & Career Center 
- Federal Employee’s Career Development & IDP Center 
The information provided may not cover all aspect of unique or special circumstances, federal regulations, medical procedures, and financial information are subject to change. To ensure the accuracy of this information, contact relevant parties and ask them to review your official personnel file and circumstances concerning this issue. Retirees can contact the OPM retirement center. Our article is not intended nor should it be considered investment advice and our articles and replies are time sensitive. Over time, various dynamic economic factors relied upon as a basis for this article may change. The advice and strategies contained herein may not be suitable for your situation and this service is not affiliated with OPM or any federal entity. You should consult with a financial, medical or human resource professional where appropriate. Neither the publisher or author shall be liable for any loss or any other commercial damages, including but not limited to special, incidental, consequential, or other damages.
Last 5 posts by Dennis Damp
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