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5 Ways to Use a Tax Return as a Financial Planning Tool

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Related: 8 Trusts That Can Help Reduce Estate Taxes

Fifty-five percent of American taxpayers say they have used the information collected and entered on their annual tax return to create or make changes to their financial plan, and 27% do so annually, according to survey findings released Tuesday by the American Institute of CPAs

The survey also found that 23% of American taxpayers do not have a financial plan, according to the survey of 2028 adults conducted in October by The Harris Poll. 

For those who took tax time as a wake-up call to seek professional advice — or perhaps got a referral from their CPA — the tax return they just filed can serve as a valuable map of their financial situation.

See the gallery above for five ways that tax return can guide the development of a comprehensive financial plan, as recommended by the AICPA’s National CPA Financial Literacy Commission.