I have a pretty detailed file system that includes going paperless on everything, tossing shit into the trashcan the moment I get it, & having a very specific file case for our past tax forms. My daddy is a CPA & prepares our taxes for us each year – after filing for us, he hands us all the print-outs & I put them in that clunky folder that is safely tucked away until forms are needed.
Like when we registered Harrison for speech through the county back in February & they needed our 2010 tax forms. I produced them, scanned the 1040′s, & the file sat on our kitchen table for months. Then they were packed with the rest of the books & salt shakers & placemats, instead of put lovingly back into the folder.
Which didn’t phase me until we handed over our
vital organs paperwork for our new loan & the loan gal is all, “Bitches, please. This is only your 1040 & I’m going to need to see some W2′s.”
Mine was easily produced by contacting my old HR director & promising him a baggie of M&Ms in exchange for a copy.
Doug? Not so much. If you remember, his company closed on Halloween & even if they could get their paws on his 2010 forms, it’s sort of a I-would-rather-eat-my-own-liver-with-a-straw-then-contact-them sort of deal that we both feel. Cue ripping apart every box in storage & every desk drawer to no avail. Which meant that the IRS was our only option. Since Doug has a hard time getting time off work, I decided to do my main squeeze a solid & go to the local IRS office for him.
After waiting in an uncomfortable chair for 2 hours, I approached the government worker:
Me: “Hi, my husband & I are buying a house & we need copies of his W2 forms.”
Her: “No. It’s a privacy issue.”
Me: “Okay. But we’ve filed jointly for the past six years. Here, I have our marriage license & my ID proving that I’m me, plus copies of our jointly filed 2010 & 2011 tax forms, including his 2011 W’s.”
Me: “He can’t get off work to come down here, so I’m doing it for him. What is he supposed to do?”
Her: “He can call & leave his name & address & we’ll mail them to him.”
Me: “Let me get this straight. He can call with no way of proving that he is who he says he is & you will mail them to the address he gives. But you will not give his legal wife who files jointly with him copies of his W2′s?”
Her: “That’s correct.”
Me: “Ma’am, I understand that these are not your rules & that you can’t hand them to me. But do you realize how absolutely ridiculous that sounds?”
There was nothing to be done, of course. I do understand that she had no way of knowing if a) I was a serial killer with forged documents or b) in the middle of a nasty divorce trying to rake him over the coals.
Lesson to be learned? Keep copies on hand at all times. Always put them back where they belong after using them. Scan them into your computer. Tattoo them on your ass.