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What is a 1099 and why should I care?

There are many types of Forms 1099, but each one inevitably serves the same purpose; and they are important to understand for payors, including financial institutions and small businesses alike.

There are many types of Forms 1099, but each one inevitably serves the same purpose; and they are important to understand for payors, including financial institutions and small businesses alike. Forms 1099 forms are issued to payees to provide them information regarding certain payments made to them throughout the year. This reporting differs from the employment income that is reported on a Form W-2.  The payor of reportable payments is also required to provide Forms 1099 to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).  These payments reported on these forms is compared to the recipient’s tax return to ensure that all income was properly reported. Therefore, it is crucial for these taxpayers to report all of their additional income to the IRS in order to avoid a potential audit. Taking everything into consideration, income reportable on Forms 1099 may include interest, , dividends, , rents, or compensation for certain freelance work. Because non-employee services income is reportable, financial institutions and small businesses that hire independent contractors are required to provide Forms 1099 to report those payments. As indicated, payors required to issue Forms 1099 must provide one copy to the IRS and another copy to the taxpayer (or the recipient of these payments). Depending on the type of reportable payment and number of forms filed, Forms 1099 may be sent to the IRS via mail or may be required to be sent electronically.

Who Has to File a 1099?

Persons engaged in a trade or business that make reportable payments are required to issue Forms 1099. This includes financial institutions, large and small business, and even tax exempt organizations.. It is important to understand the types of income that are reportable and the various types of Forms 1099 because the forms can have varying due dates.  Significant to this, the IRS recently changed the due date for forms reporting services income paid to independent contractors, with both the IRS and recipient copy now due on January 31st.

Different types of Forms 1099

While there are many different types of 1099 forms, these are the most common types: 1099-DIV, 1099-INT, 1099-NEC ,1099-MISC, 1099-R. A 1099-DIV is used by a corporation (or its transfer agent) to report dividends paid. A 1099-INT is used by the payor of interest.  This includes a financial institution as well as any other person engaged in a trade or business that makes interest payments during the calendar year.. A 1099-MISC is used to report rents, royalties, fees, and other types of non-service income New Form 1099-NEC is used to report services income paid to independent contractors. Lastly, a 1099-R (referred to as Distributions from Pensions, Annuities, Retirement or Profit-Sharing Plans, IRAs, Insurance Contracts, etc.) is used to report distributions from an IRA, or another type of retirement fund.

Why should you care about a 1099?

Persons engaged in a trade or business that make reportable payments during the calendar year must report those payments on the appropriate Form 1099.  Because this information is a valuable compliance tool to the IRS, the regulations impose penalties for failure to comply.  These penalties can range from $560 per individual failure to 10% of the gross amount not reported, if the IRS finds the failure to be intentional disregard.  A backup liability of 24% of the reportable payment is also imposed if the payor did not get the payee’s taxpayer identification number in the manner required.

If you’ve been looking for a service to help prepare and file your Forms 1099, KPMG Spark can help. Our team of accounting professionals can process your 1099s to deliver accurate, efficient, results. Visit to learn more.



The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of KPMG LLP.

This blog article is not intended to address or provide advice concerning the specific circumstances of any particular individual or entity and does not constitute an endorsement of any entity or its products or services.

Some or all of the services described herein may not be permissible for KPMG audit clients and their affiliates or related entities.

The following information is not intended to be “written advice concerning one or more Federal tax matters” subject to the requirements of section 10.37(a)(2) of Treasury Department Circular 230. The information contained herein is of a general nature and based on authorities that are subject to change. Applicability of the information to specific situations should be determined through consultation with your tax adviser.

Trevor ReillyPosted In: Tax Tips


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