As an employee of a company, you normally receive a W-2 that details your annual income earned, taxes paid and other information needed to complete your state and federal tax returns. However, if you work as an independent contractor, earned interest on bank accounts or received other miscellaneous income, the companies that paid you more than $600 in a calendar year should provide you with a Form 1099, instead of a W-2, to report your income to the Internal Revenue Service. If you do not receive your 1099s, you are still obligated to pay taxes on the income earned.
Internal Revenue Service Form 1099 is issued for various types of income earned during the past calendar year. For example, 1099-DIV is used for dividend income earned on your investments. Form 1099-INT is issued by banking institutions for interest earned on your accounts. If you earn income from work as an independent contractor or provide other business services on an as-needed basis, you are sent a 1099-MISC by the companies that paid you.
The Form 1099 that you receive will include the name, address and tax identification number of the company that paid you. Your identification number also will be on the form. It can be your Social Security or Federal Employer Identification number. Several income boxes are listed on the form, but not all of them need to be filled in. For example, if you are an independent contractor or other service provider, then Box 7 of Form 1099-MISC will record the amount of money paid to you in a calendar year.
Those who paid you over $600 are required to send a Form 1099 to you by January 31 of the following year. If you don't receive the Form 1099s that you expect, call each payer and ask for it or a duplicate, if it was already sent. If you still do not receive the form by February 15, call the IRS at 800-829-1040. If you give the IRS your and the payer's information, a representative will contact the company and ask for a 1099 for you.
Completing Your Taxes
Since most of the 1099 forms do not include income tax withholding, except the 1099-R, you do not need to attach them to your tax return. Therefore, you may complete your income tax filing without the form. Use your records or call the companies to calculate how much you earned from each payer. It's important to claim the income because it's the right thing to do. Also, if you fail to do so and a 1099 was submitted to the government on your behalf, you can be audited for not paying enough taxes on earned income. If you file your return and receive the 1099 afterward, you should use an amended income tax return to report any inconsistencies between the form and the amount you claimed.
Carol Deeb has been an editor and writer since 1988. Her work has appeared in magazines, newspapers and online publications, as well as a book on education. Deeb is a real-estate investor and business owner with professional experience in human resources. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from San Diego State University.