Sunday, 13 January 2013

Penalties for Not Filing a 1099-Misc

If you receive income from a source other than earned wages or salaries, you may receive a Form 1099-MISC, Miscellaneous Income.Generally, the income on this form is subject to federal income tax and state income tax. The IRS requires those that pay miscellaneous income in the course of their trade or business to issue Form 1099-MISC to their payees and requires the payees to include these payments on their tax returns.

Form 1099-MISC

Several types of income can be reported on Form 1099-MISC, including non-employee compensation, rent, royalties and fishing boat proceeds. One of the most common reasons for receiving a 1099-MISC is performing work as an independent contractor. If you have the payer withhold federal income tax from your  payments, the payer will report the withholding in Box 4. State income tax withholding is reported in Box 16.

Penalties for not issuing Form 1099-MISC

People and companies that make payments of miscellaneous income to individuals must give the payee Form 1099-MISC by the end (in most cases) of February of the year following the tax year in which the income was paid. For example, if you received miscellaneous income in 2012, the paying institution or individual must issue Form 1099-MISC by February 28, 2013. If the institution fails to do so, the penalty against the company varies from $30 to $100 per form ($500,000 maximum per year), depending on how long past the deadline the company issues the form. If a company intentionally disregards the requirement to provide a correct payee statement, it is subject to a minimum penalty of $250 per statement, with no maximum.

Penalties for not reporting Form 1099-MISC

The amount of the penalty is based on when the correct 1099 is filed:
  • $30 per information return if you correctly file within 30 days of the due date (by March 30 if the due date is February 28). The maximum penalty is $250,000 per year ($75,000 for small businesses).
  • $60 per information return if you correctly file more than 30 days after the due date but by August 1; maximum penalty $500,000 per year ($200,000 for small businesses).
  • $100 per information return if you file after August 1 or you do not file required information returns. In this case the maximum penalty is $1,500,000 per year ($500,000 for small businesses)
If you do not file corrections and you do not meet any of the exceptions to the penalty described above, the penalty is $100 per information return.  

Exceptions to the penalty

The following are exceptions to the failure to file penalty.
  • The penalty will not apply to any failure where you can furnish a reasonable cause to prove that it was not a willful neglect. In other words, you must be able to show that your failure was due to an event beyond your control or due to significant mitigating factors. You must also be able to show that you acted in a responsible manner
    and took steps to avoid the failure.

  • An insignificant error or omission is not considered a failure to include correct information. An insignificant error or omission does not stop the IRS from processing the return, from correlating the information required to be shown on the return with the information shown on the payee's tax return, or from putting the return to its actual use. Errors and omissions that are not considered as in significant are those that are related to
    (a) a TIN, (b) a payee's surname, and (c) any money amount.

  • Deminimis rule for corrections. Even though you cannot show reasonable cause, the penalty for failure to file correct information returns will not apply to a certain number of returns if you:
    • a. Filed those information returns,

    • b. Either failed to include all the information required on a return or included incorrect information, and

    • c. Filed corrections by August 1.
If you meet all the conditions in a, b, and c above, the penalty for filing incorrect returns (but not for filing late) will not apply to more than 10 information returns or ½ of 1% of the total number of information returns you are required to file for the calendar year.
Intentional disregard of filing requirements. If any failure to file a correct information return is due to intentional disregard of the filing or correct information requirements, the penalty is at least $250 per information return with no maximum penalty
How to report Form 1099-MISC on your return

To avoid an underpayment penalty, be sure to include your miscellaneous income on your Form 1040. If your income is non-employee compensation, you’ll need to complete, in most cases, Schedule C, Profit or Loss From Business, and then transfer the net earnings to Line 12. For rents or royalties, complete Schedule E, Supplemental Income or Loss, and then enter the net income on Line 17 of Form 1040.


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