How to fill out an IRS Form 1099

Form 1099 is a collection of IRS forms used to report different types of payments made by an individual or business that is typically not your employer. In total, there are about 20 different 1099 forms that report various types of payments you may receive throughout the year.

If you want to know all the details, here you will find all the information about this IRS document, including a guide on how to fill out the 1099 form.

What is the Form 1099?

As mentioned before, the 1099 form is a series of tax documents used to report to the IRS the income and payments made by a business or individual who is not your employer.

This document contains information about the payments made during the year. Such payments can be for earnings working as a self-employed or independent contractor, rental income, tax refunds, gambling winnings, among others.

Who needs to file the 1099 form?

If you work as a freelancer or independent contractor, you will often have income reports on a Form 1099. This form must be completed by the payer, who must send copies to you and the IRS, reporting payments made during the tax year. If necessary, the payer must also send a copy to your state taxing authority.

Payments made under $600 do not require filing 1099 form, although the payer may still choose to do so.

What are the types of Form 1099?

There are several types of 1099 forms used to report information on different forms of income. Among the most used 1099 forms, we can mention the following types:

  • Form 1099-MISC: to report payments you receive like rent, royalties, prizes or other income that qualifies as compensation.
  • Form 1099-NEC: for reporting nonemployee compensation, or income earned as a freelancer, independent contractor or self-employed individual.
  • Form 1099-B: for reporting sales of bonds, stocks, derivatives, and other securities during the fiscal year through one or more brokers.
  • Form 1099-DIV: to report dividends and other distributions typically from investments.
  • Form 1099-G: to report unemployment compensation or other state contributions.
  • Form 1099-INT: to report any income from interest you received during the year, such as from an interest-bearing checking account.
  • Form 1099-K: to report credit card transactions and third-party network payments. This form must be submitted by those who accept more than 200 third party transactions, or whose total transactions received is at least $20,000.

 Form 1099-R: to report the distribution of retirement benefits such as pensions and annuities of $10 or more.

What is the difference between Forms 1099-MISC and 1099-NEC?

Among the different types of Form 1099, the most commonly used are the 1099-MISC and 1099-NEC.

The main difference between these two forms is that the 1099-NEC is used to report self-employment income, while the 1099-MISC is only used to report miscellaneous income, such as rent or payments to an attorney. Although Form 1099-MISC is still used, contractor payments made in 2020 and beyond will be reported on Form 1099-NEC.

How to fill out a Form 1099

The first thing you should do is download the corresponding 1099 form. To download the 1099-MISC form click here and to download the 1099-NEC form click here.

Once the form is downloaded, you will see that it has two copies: Copy A (in red) and Copy B (in black).

Copy A

This copy is for informational purposes only and does not need to be printed. The official printed version of Copy A is scannable, but the version that appears on the IRS website should not be filed in print.

As the payer, you must report your payment to the payee using Copy A of each form to submit to the IRS.

Copy B

Copy B can be downloaded, printed and sent to the recipient for providing payment data to the recipient. This copy must be completed in the same manner as Copy A and sent to the contractor as proof of payment.

In the event that you are a beneficiary and receive Copy B from a client, you do not need to send it to the IRS. You only need to report this income on your tax return.

How, when and where to send Form 1099

Copies A and B of all 1099 forms must be submitted as follows:

1.      Send Copy A to the IRS

Copy A must be sent to the IRS before January 31st. You can submit your application by mail or electronically. If you do it online, you must enter the Filing Information Returns Electronically (FIRE).

2.      Send Copy B to the beneficiary

After you fill out Form 1099, you must send a Copy B to all of your beneficiaries by January 31st. You will be able to send the copy electronically to the beneficiary as long as you have their consent.

3.      Submit Form 1096

If you choose the web submission method, you must attach Form 1096, along with the paper copy of Form 1099 and Copy A.

Finally, when you have gathered all these documents, you will need to send them to the IRS.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the deadline to file a 1099 form?

Most 1099 forms are required to be submitted by January 31st, but in some cases, the deadline is February 15th.

What should I do if I have not received my 1099 form?

If you haven’t received all of your 1099 forms by January 31st or February 15th, contact the person or business responsible for sending you the 1099 and ask for a copy of the form so you can file your taxes on time.