The number of freelancers working in the United States has nearly doubled in the past decade. As the number grows, the usage of the W-9 Form becomes more important for the Internal Revenue Service. The agency recently revisioned the form and made it more suitable for future uses.
Whether you work as a freelancer online or somewhere out there, it must be completed whenever your payors request it from you. Not complying with the federal law will bring you a fine for $50 each instance you don’t provide it. On top of the penalty, your payor can withhold 28% of your earnings and forward it to the IRS.
Although this isn’t all that common, it is possible if you’ve worked for a large corporation and did not fulfill the duties on your side.
How to complete a W-9 form
First and foremost, get your printable copy of the W-9 Form from the IRS website. You can use this link to get the PDF version of the W-9. From there on, click the download button or directly print it by clicking the print button from the up top.
Since you will be sending this form the entity or the person requested it, you won’t give out much information. A few simple information to verify your identity is enough for the payor to help prepare their 1099 Form at the end of the year. All the needed information on the form include:
- Your name
- Your business name
- Your business tax classification
- Exemptions if there is any
- City, State, and ZIP Code
- List account number
Optionally, you can write down the requester’s name and address for the mailing company in case of the envelope you put in the form gets damaged.