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IRS publication 552 says:
"You must keep your records as long as they may be needed for the administration of any provision of the Internal Revenue Code. Generally, this means you must keep records that support items shown on your return until the period of limitations for that return runs out...."

I've heard that 7-10 years is generally safe.

For more, see http://www.irs.gov/prod/forms_pubs/pubs/p55203.htm

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