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AREAS OF PRACTICE
AREAS OF PRACTICE
Filing a Form 1099
You have a business, and your business paid an independent contractor, vendor, or other person for services, goods, or rent sometime during the year. Perhaps you paid an accountant to do your bookkeeping, or an attorney to advise you regarding a contract. Maybe you paid someone to do some overflow work for you for a few weeks or months, or paid a website developer, an advertiser, a printer, a consultant, a painter, a handyman, or a landlord.
Do you know what your tax filing requirements are with respect to the independent contractor, vendor, or other payee?
If you did not pay the person who performed the services (or provided the goods or leased space) for you as an employee (and withhold income tax, social security, Medicare, and FICA from wages paid to the person), you may be required to file an information return with the Internal Revenue Service reporting the compensation or rent that your business paid.
Section 6041 of the Internal Revenue Code contains the requirement that any person, including a corporation, limited liability company, partnership, individual, estate, or trust, who is engaged in a trade or business and who make payments of rent or other compensation to another person totaling $600 of more during the year is required to file an information return reporting such payments or transactions to the IRS. Persons required to file information returns to the IRS must also furnish statements to the other party to the transaction, such as recipients of income.
Generally in the case of independent contractors, vendors, and other payees, IRS Form 1099 is the information return used to report the payment of rent or other compensation to the IRS.
What is a 1099?
The IRS uses Form 1099 to distinguish different types of income that are paid to a person who is not an employee—it is the tax form that tracks payments to independent contractors. While there are many different types of 1099s, the one that is most relevant to small business owners and independent contractors is the Form 1099-MISC.
IRS Form 1099-MISC is used to report miscellaneous items of income. There are different boxes on the form to report different types of income or payments. Here are examples of the types of payments reported on Form 1099-MISC:
Do You Need to File a 1099 This Year?
If you paid an independent contractor, vendor, or landlord more than $600 during the tax year, then you’ll need to file a 1099 for that person with the IRS and send a copy to that person.
You are not required to file information return(s) if:
How to File a 1099 Form
In order to complete and file 1099s, you must have the following information for each contractor, vendor, or other payee:
The standard method for acquiring this information is to have each contractor, vendor, or other payee fill out IRS Form W-9, Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification. This form collects the contractor, vendor, or other payee’s name, business name, address, tax classification (for example sole proprietor, LLC, corporation), and taxpayer identification number.
As a best practice, you should have a Form W-9 (available on the IRS’s website, here) on file for each of your contractors, vendors, or other payees. In fact, having contractors, vendors, and other payees fill out and return a W-9 to your business should be one of the first administrative tasks you complete after engaging their services.
Once you have this information, there are a few ways that you can file 1099 forms.
What is the deadline for filing a 1099?
If you file paper Forms 1099 (physically mail in the forms), they must be filed with the IRS by February 29, 2016. For paper Forms 1099, you must send/file Copy A of all paper Forms 1099 to the IRS along with Form 1096, Annual Summary and Transmittal of U.S. Information Returns (Form 1096 summarizes the Forms 1099 you filed).
If you file electronically, you must file Forms 1099 by March 31, 2016. You do not need to file Form 1096 with electronically filed Forms 1099.
Whether you file electronically or by paper, the deadline for furnishing Form 1099-MISC to the independent contractor is February 1, 2016.
A business who is required to file Form 1099 and fails to do so, or does so late, may be subject to penalties.
If you have any questions about Form 1099, or are unsure if you are required to file a 1099, contact the tax attorneys at the Politte Law Offices today.
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