Filing Form 1099 – an overview

January 30, 2015 by  
Filed under Tax Forms

If you made certain payments during the tax year, you are required by the IRS to send a Form 1099 to the recipient of the payment and file a copy with the IRS.

There are many different versions of Form 1099 for different types of payments.  The following table sets forth the filing requirements for each type of Form 1099 you may need to file.

Form 1099 Descriptions, Requirements, and Due Dates

1099 Form Types of Payment Reported Minimum Reporting Requirement* Date Due to Recipient Date Due to IRS
1099-A Information about the acquisition or abandonment of property that is security for a debt for which you are the lender Any amount Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099-B Sales or redemptions of securities, futures transactions, commodities, and barter exchange transactions Any amount Feb. 15 Feb. 28
1099-C Cancellation of a debt $600 Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099-CAP Information about cash, stock, or other property from an acquisition of control or the substantial change in capital structure of a corporation $1,000 Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099-DIV Distributions, such as dividends, capital gain distributions, or nontaxable distributions, that were paid on stock and liquidation distributions $10 ($600 or more for liquidations) Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099-G Unemployment compensation, state and local income tax refunds, agricultural payments, and taxable grants $10 Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099-H Advance payments of health insurance premiums made under the Health Coverage Tax Credit Any amount Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099-INT Interest income $10 ($600 for certain business-related interest income) Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099-K Merchant card (credit and debit card) payments; third party network payments (such as PayPal) $20,000 in total transactions Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099-LTC Long-term care benefits, including accelerated death benefits Any amount Jan. 31 Feb. 28
  • nonemployee compensation (including contract payments, commissions, reimbursements, awards, and bonuses)
  • rental income
  • royalties
  • attorney fees
  • board of directors fees
  • medical service fees
  • proceeds from direct sales of consumer products for resale
  • crop insurance proceeds
  • payments to fishing boat crew members
  • Indian gaming profits paid to tribal members
  • punitive damages awarded in court
  • “golden parachutes”
  • substitute dividends and tax-exempt interest payments
  • income from a nonqualified deferred compensation plan
  • $600 for non-employee compensation
  • $10 for royalties, substitute dividends, and tax-exempt interest payments
  • any amount for other sources
Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099‑OID Original issue discounts $10 Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099‑PATR Distributions from co-ops $10 Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099-Q Distributions from Coverdell ESAs and Qualified Tuition Programs Any amount Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099-R Distributions from profit-sharing or retirement plans, individual retirement arrangements (IRAs), annuities, pensions, insurance contracts, survivor income benefit plans, permanent and total disability payments under life insurance contracts, charitable gift annuities, etc. $10 Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099-S Sale or exchange of any ownership interest land, permanent structures (including any residential, commercial, or industrial building), condominium unit, stock in a cooperative housing corporation, or standing timber $600 Jan. 31 Feb. 28
1099-SA Distributions from made from a health savings account (HSA), Archer medical savings account (Archer MSA), or Medicare Advantage MSA (MA MSA) Any amount Jan. 31 Feb. 28

*Minimum Reporting Requirement: You are required to file a 1099 if the sum of all the payments you made during the year to any one recipient was this amount or more.

Payments to Corporations and Partnerships

Generally, payments to corporations are not reportable. However, you must report payments to corporations for the following.

  • Medical and health care payments (Form 1099-MISC),
  • Withheld federal income tax or foreign tax,
  • Barter exchange transactions (Form 1099-B),
  • Substitute payments in lieu of dividends and tax-exempt interest (Form 1099-MISC),
  • Acquisitions or abandonments of secured property (Form 1099-A),
  • Cancellation of debt (Form 1099-C),
  • Payments of attorneys’ fees and gross proceeds paid to attorneys (Form 1099-MISC),
  • Fish purchases for cash (Form 1099-MISC),
  • The credits for qualified tax credit bonds treated as interest and reported on Form 1099-INT,
  • Merchant card and third-party network payments (Form 1099-K), and
  • Federal executive agency payments for services (Form 1099-MISC).

Reporting generally is required for all payments to partnerships. For example, payments of $600 or more made in the course of your trade or business to an architectural firm that is a partnership are reportable on Form 1099-MISC.

How Do I File a 1099?

1099s are filed on paper only. Unlike other tax forms, 1099s cannot generally be printed out at home on a desktop printer. Blank 1099s are printed on special paper. You can obtain the forms for free from the IRS or buy them at office supply stores.

Each Form 1099 comes with 5 copies. You write or type on the top copy and it transfers down onto each copy, like carbon paper. You fill out the 1099 and send Copy A to the IRS, Copy 1 to the appropriate state tax agency, Copy B and Copy 2 to the income’s recipient (they get two copies so they can attach one to their return and keep one), and you keep Copy C for your records.

After you have filled out all of your 1099 forms for the year, you need to fill out a Form 1096 as well. Form 1096 summarizes all of your 1099 forms and is filed with the IRS.

While the forms must be filed on paper, they can be transmitted to the IRS through the FIRE (Filing Information Returns Electronically) system.

All Form 1099 filers must have an EIN. If you have not previously filed a Form 1099 or other return, you must obtain an EIN and include it on each Form 1099 that you file.

Last updated: January 30, 2015

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