The Habit of Hiring Contractors

It’s that time. Small business owners are scrambling to gather their paperwork in preparation for tax season. If you wear several hats in your business, you’re one of many who may be feeling overwhelmed in meeting the multitude of deadlines we’re all facing. In these challenging first months of the new year, it may be a good idea to take the time to make room for improvements now as you discover where you went wrong in the prior year.

One common oversight in the small business is neglecting to process the proper paperwork in anticipation for reporting 1099-Misc forms at year-end. If you’ve hired subcontractors, or independent contractors, throughout the calendar year and have no W-9 Form (requests for tax payer identification number) for them on file, you may find yourself making last-minute requests for information to get 1099-Misc Forms out the door.

A good habit to practice is to have the W-9 completed upon agreement of the contract for employment and prior to commencement of work. Taking it further, if you utilize an accounting software program such as QuickBooks, entering their information and denoting their vendor profile as “1099 eligible” will make the year-end process for outside service providers seamless.

Lastly, keep all W-9 Forms for a minimum of 4 years for IRS purposes. If you rehire the contractor, be sure all information is current, including the mailing address to ensure the recipient receives his/her copies of the 1099-Misc Form.

Click the following  link for a printable W-9 Form:

https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/fw9.pdf