How to Fill Out a 1099-MISC Form: Simple Guide

When it’s time to report your tax return after the tax year, there are lots of forms and schedules to fill and file to reflect all the sources of your income. While it’s impossible to have a special form for literally any case, the Form 1099-MISC exists for most miscellaneous incomes not covered by other forms. Its main difference from other forms is that it should be filled and filed by a payer, not a receiver.

What Is a 1099-MISC Form

1099-MISC is a form that you use to report the payments you have made to others. At this point, you may think of using a 1099-MISC form for employee taxing. In fact, it has to contain much more. As a payer, you should specify all the persons who received money from you during the year as income, not being your direct employees. It can be rents, prizes, awards, medical and health care payments, and so on. In fact, it covers a sector big enough to speak of the MISC-1099 economy.

While getting the legit fillable copies of this form is quite a quest (here’s more on how to get a 1099-MISC Form), there are digital versions that are easier to fill and file. Given that this form should be sent to at least three recipients each, and there can be many instances of it, you’d better think of going digital when it comes to Form 1099-MISC.

Who Gets a 1099-MISC

If you have made any payments to other people that qualify as their income, you (as the payer) should fill the 1099-MISC form for rent, various services, including fishing boat rentals and fish for resale, and other payments, one for each case, both for the IRS and for the recipient. You don’t have to do it if the overall sum you paid to the recipient during the whole year did not exceed $600, except for royalties or broker payments in lieu of dividends or tax-exempt interest, for which the threshold amount is just $10. Therefore, it is because royalties and other payments of this sort finally form considerable amounts from these minor sums.

When you fill the form, you should file it both to the IRS and to the recipient of your payments. This is done to provide the recipient with legal proof of their income and to simplify the double-checking of tax returns by the IRS. What is a 1099 MISC form used for by the recipient? First of all, to form their own tax returns. So, the form includes copies for everyone who should receive a 1099-MISC filled out by the payer:

  • Copy A (for the IRS)
  • Copy 1 (for State Tax Department)
  • Copy B and Copy 2 (for the recipient who’ll also need to send one of them to the IRS)
  • Copy C (for the payer to keep).
As the name suggests, all these copies should contain identical figures.

How to Fill Out a 1099-MISC Form

It’s one of the simplest forms to fill, though it requires that you know the details of the recipient, such as their name, address, TIN, and account number. Still, filling a printed version of this form is a bit tricky. You should request forms from the IRS because the one published on its official site is neither printable nor scannable. Then you should devote time to receiving the paper forms and filling them right. If you don’t know how to fill out a 1099-MISC form, you can make mistakes and require more forms.
Filing it electronically has a lot of benefits:

  • It’s easier to correct a 1099-MISC if you type in wrong data;
  • It takes neither paper nor other stationery;
  • You can take your time and fill it partly until you receive the missing data;
  • You can consult your electronic records to check the payments you’ve made;
  • You can always switch to this tab and see how to fill out a 1099 form.
The fillable 1099-MISC on PDF Liner has all it takes to complete the form easily. So the guide looks like this:

In the left part:

1. Enter your own details in the fields.

It should cause no problem: it’s your regular details including name, street address, and so on.
2. Enter the recipient’s details in the corresponding fields.

Check whether both your and the recipient’s TIN are entered correctly. If you are an independent contractor, you can use your SSN as TIN. Check the recipient’s Form W-9 for their TIN and other information.
3. Check the box FATCA if needed.

If you are reportable under Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act check the box. If you don’t know that, probably you are not reportable.
In the right part:

1. Enter the amount of the payment you actually made to the recipient.

Select the field that fits the type of the payment and type the amount there.
2. Leave blank the inapplicable fields

With paper forms, blank fields are better crossed or filled with zeroes to avoid abuse. Here, though, you’ll have a legit digital copy.

3. Tick the box in Field 7 if it applies.
4. Enter the amount of nonqualified deferred compensation in Field 14.

If you don’t know what it is and have never kept track of it, it probably does not apply.

5. Leave blank Fields 16 and 17

Unless you participate in the Combined Federal/State Filing Program, but then you know about it.

After that, you only need to file the form (there is another article about how to do it).

How to File a 1099-MISC Form

Usually, payers that file their forms electronically need to use the FIRE (Filing Information Returns Electronically) system. This system is specifically shaped to process digital versions of several forms, including MISC-1099. You need to have a prepared and signed version of your form to get its digital version.
As for 1099-MISC for 2021, Copy B should be sent to the recipient not later than January 31, 2022, so they can process it at forming their tax returns. Copy A should be filed to the IRS no later than February 28, 2022 (if on paper) or March 31, 2022 (if electronically).


In this section, there are several answers to the questions about a 1099-MISC Form, which may help you clarify all the uncertainties that may still bother you.
I got a 1099-MISC. Now what?
Now shake the dust off your financial records and recollect everyone who received money from you during that year. If you received a legit blank form from the IRS, you can file it by hand and then scan or send it by traditional mail (don’t forget to make a copy for yourself!) Otherwise, you can do it digitally to save that trouble.
When does 1099-MISC have to be filed?
It should be filed after the financial year is over. The usual deadline is January 31 for sending forms to recipients, and February 28 for filing them to the IRS.
Where to mail 1099-MISC forms to the IRS?
It depends on your location. You can contact the IRS directly to check which office you should send your forms to. But if you do it electronically, there is a unified FIRE system for that.
What is the penalty for filing 1099-MISC late?
There is a special procedure of how to file 1099-MISC after deadline calls. The standard penalty is usually from $50 to $250 per form, depending on how long it has taken you to finally complete the form. So even if you have missed the deadline, you should correct your mistake as soon as possible.
Can I file 1099-MISC online?
Yes, and it will save you a lot of time, confusion, and paperwork. That’s the greatness of the electronic version of 1099-MISC for independent contractors who appreciate their time.
Can you fill out 1099-MISC by hand?
Yes, but there are several remarks. You need to get its copies from the IRS, with your TIN or SSN already printed. You cannot scan and send them electronically, as they need to be scanned at the data centers. Thus, digital versions make more sense.

Printable Blank Form 1099-MISC

  • How to Fill Out Form 1040-ES: Helpful Tips
  • How to Get Form 1040-ES: Tips for Taxpayers
  • How to Get Form 1040 Schedule C Online