How to Transfer Previous Tax Years Into TurboTax. The process of preparing and filing a current-year tax return often requires taxpayers to access previous-year tax returns and worksheets, verifying transaction, depreciation and capital-gain information. TurboTax allows you to transfer data from a previous tax year by using a relatively flexible "Transfer" feature that searches your computer for past-year tax files.
Transfer Previous Tax Years Into TurboTax
Create and name your TurboTax current-year tax file and save it to the appropriate folder before you transfer, import or enter data from other tax years, so that the appropriate files will be associated for easy access.
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Select "Tax History Report" from the "Tools" to find out what previous tax years are already associated with your tax file. You may repeat this step at any time to check on the status of past-year returns. You may also manually enter summary information into the tax-history report if necessary.
Click on "Transfer" from the TurboTax "File" pull-down menu to initiate a search of your computer for previous-year tax files and begin the transfer process.
Pull down the "Files of type" menu from the "Select Return to Transfer From" dialog box to specify whether the program should search for a return prepared with TurboTax, TaxCut, TaxAct or another tax-preparation program.
Follow the prompts to check appropriate data folders, finding and transferring the tax data into your current-year return file. If this process does not produce your previous-year tax data, it may be on an old computer.
Transfer Previous Tax Years From Another Computer
Search your old computer for files with the suffix .tax, .ta5, or .t05. Alternatively, you may open TurboTax or another tax-preparation program if it is installed on your old computer and browse for previous-year tax files.
Use the "Save as" function to save your old tax return onto storage media, such as a CD-R disc or flash drive, that will allow you to transfer it to your new computer.
Copy the file to your new computer's hard drive and open TurboTax.
Browse the new computer to find, select and open the file that you have transferred from another computer and save it as a new return identified by the old year.
Use the "Transfer" option from the TurboTax "File" pull-down menu to transfer the old return, so that its data is accessible from your current return.
When checking your old computer's hard drive for a previous-year tax return's data file, look first in the data folder used by TurboTax or another tax-preparation program, and then in other likely places, such as your "My Documents" folder and your Gmail drive.