The Balanced Pages/For Small Businesses/Freelancers Alert: New Rules for Reporting Income via Paypal, Venmo, or Cash App

Freelancers Alert: New Rules for Reporting Income via Paypal, Venmo, or Cash App

Monday, April 29, 2024

If you receive payments through Paypal, Venmo, or Cash App as a freelancer or side hustler, you should know the new income reporting regulations. The IRS has updated the 1099-K tax form requirements, which will affect how you report your earnings in the future. It is critical to comprehend these modifications to avoid any fines or misunderstandings while filing your taxes. Let's explore what these new regulations imply and how to prepare for the upcoming tax season/s.

How This Reporting Change Affects Freelancers and Side Hustlers

The IRS has temporarily paused the tightened reporting requirements for 1099-K for the 2023 tax year. This is good news for freelancers and side hustlers who receive payments through Paypal, Venmo, Cash App, and similar platforms. The income earned from these platforms in 2023 will be reported as usual anything over $600 should be reported when you file your taxes in 2024.

Starting in 2024, there will be changes to how you report your income. If you earn over $5,000 through platforms like Paypal, Venmo, and Cash App this year, you will receive a 1099-K form from Paypal, Venmo, or Cash App. This means you'll need to keep track of your income more accurately and ensure it’s reported correctly. The change will affect your tax preparation and prompt freelancers and side hustlers to reconsider their payment methods.

If tax reporting previously made using Venmo and Cash App is inconvenient, the increased threshold might make it more appealing. On the other hand, if the $5,000 threshold is too low, it may be worth exploring alternative payment methods that don't require the exact tax reporting requirements.

Note: The way your earnings are reported has changed. You must keep comprehensive records of every payment you receive to accurately report your income to the IRS when you file your taxes. This is crucial to avoid potential issues in the future.

Preparing for the 2024 Tax Year

To comply with the new $5,000 threshold for issuing the 1099-K form, freelancers and side hustlers are strongly encouraged to track every dollar earned through digital platforms. Establishing a consistent and detailed logging process is crucial to sustained financial reporting. Here are a few things to consider:

  • Adopting spreadsheet software or financial tracking apps to streamline this process
  • Keeping organized copies of invoices, contracts, and receipts relevant to your work.
  • Seeking the advice of a tax professional
  • Investing in software solutions designed for freelancers can make the transition to these new tax reporting rules much more manageable.

Note: Personal payments from family and friends should not be reported on Form 1099-K because they are not payments for goods or services.

Potential Future Changes and How to Stay Informed​

The tax legislation is constantly evolving, which means that the IRS's position on the reporting requirements for the 1099-K form may undergo further changes. Such modifications could impact freelancers and side hustlers relying on digital payment platforms for income. To navigate these potential shifts effectively, staying informed and vigilant about the latest tax rules and guidelines is crucial. Here are some things you can do:​

  • To stay updated with the latest tax-related news, subscribe to IRS newsletters and follow their social media channels. The IRS website also offers detailed guides and FAQs to help you understand how new developments may affect your tax obligations.
  • Joining freelancer communities can provide valuable insights. These groups often share tips and updates on tax-related matters, helping you anticipate and adjust to changes in reporting requirements.
  • Use a tax and/or bookkeeping software, like QuickBooks, and financial apps to stay updated with changes in tax laws and streamline your financial tracking. This ensures you have the latest information for tax reporting.
  • An annual consultation with a tax professional can provide peace of mind. They can offer tailored advice on changes affecting your tax situation, ensuring you're always one step ahead. It is suggested to do this before year-end to prepare with enough time ahead of you to make changes if needs.

Staying informed is not only about avoiding penalties but also about maximizing your earnings and tax liabilities. By taking a proactive approach and utilizing available resources, you can navigate future changes in the 1099-K reporting requirements and maintain compliance with confidence.​

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This content is for information purposes only and should not be considered legal, accounting, or tax advice, or a substitute for obtaining such advice specific to your business from a professional accountant. Additional information and exceptions may apply. Applicable laws may vary by state or locality. No assurance is given that the information is comprehensive in its coverage or that it is suitable in dealing with a customer’s particular situation. J&S Accounting does not have any responsibility for updating or revising any information presented herein. Accordingly, the information provided should not be relied upon as a substitute for independent research. J&S Accounting does not warrant that the material contained herein will continue to be accurate, nor that it is completely free of errors when published. Readers and viewers should verify statements before relying on them.

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Disclaimer

This content is for information purposes only and should not be considered legal, accounting, or tax advice, or a substitute for obtaining such advice specific to your business from a professional accountant. Additional information and exceptions may apply. Applicable laws may vary by state or locality. No assurance is given that the information is comprehensive in its coverage or that it is suitable in dealing with a customer’s particular situation. J&S Accounting does not have any responsibility for updating or revising any information presented herein. Accordingly, the information provided should not be relied upon as a substitute for independent research. J&S Accounting does not warrant that the material contained herein will continue to be accurate, nor that it is completely free of errors when published. Readers and viewers should verify statements before relying on them.