How Do I Get My 1099 Form From A Previous Employer?

By Jay White

June 7, 2015   •   Fact checked by Dumb Little Man

While direct employees of a company receive a W2 that details their earnings and withholdings for the previous tax year, contractors and self-employed individuals are eligible to receive a 1099 (1099-Misc is the most common type) form. If you’re a contractor, you’ll use this form to fill out the IRS form 1099 Misc when filing your taxes.

Although companies are supposed to mail out these forms by the last week in January, this form can be lost in the mail or your previous employer may not know how or when to issue you the form. You should contact your former employer as soon as possible to ensure you can file your taxes on time. However, you may have to file for an extension if you’re unable to complete your taxes because you don’t have the 1099 form.

The correct person to contact will vary depending upon the business. For example, if the business is large enough to have a Human Resources department, a person who works in this department will be your best bet. A small-business owner might be the person to provide you with the 1099 form if it is a smaller business.

Note that you do not necessarily need a 1099 form if your previous employer cannot or will not supply it. You can simply list any income on your tax return without the 1099 form. As long as you report it, you’re in the clear. You may also save money if your accountant or tax company charges you based on the number of 1099s you file. However, having the form does serve as proof and may help your tax return be approved or be approved in less time.

Tracking the amount of money you made through payments or other paperwork provides you with the data you need to file your taxes even if you don’t receive the 1099 on time or at all. As a contractor, it’s important to do this in the event that a company you previously worked with doesn’t provide you with the correct forms.

Companies are not required to issue this form if you made less than $10 in the tax year for royalties or broker payments or if you may less than $600 in payments for other services and work. However, you’re still required by law to report income lower than $600 during the previous tax year.

Jay White

I started Dumb Little Man many years ago so great authors, writers and bloggers could share their life "hacks" and tips for success with everyone. I hope you find something you like!

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