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  1. #1
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    Social Security #'s and Filing Taxes (US)

    I have a general tax question regarding US taxes. It seems to only be a problem for one client.

    - I am a freelance web developer
    - I file my taxes as self-employed.
    - I claim all my income on 1099.

    I have a client currently who wants my Social Security #. He did not have me fill out a W-9, when starting work with him, nor did he send me a 1099.

    However, he seems to think that it is necessary to have my Social Security #, or Tax Payer ID to do his taxes. This is the only client that seems to think this way. I myself hire freelancers and just claim their wages as an business expense.

    It is my understanding that a Social Security #, Tax ID is not necessary unless you are freelancing for an incorporated identity, or your 'employer' is withholding taxes for you.

    How do other freelancers handle this situation?

    Thanks,
    Rob

  2. #2
    Follow Me On Twitter: @djg gold trophysilver trophybronze trophy Dan Grossman's Avatar
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    He'd need your social security to send a 1099 in the first place. Unless you think he's got ulterior motives, just let him have it. If you're paying freelancers more than $600 each over the course of a year, you may owe some of them 1099s yourself.

  3. #3
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy
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    Most of my freelance experience involved larger or ongoing engagements so 1099s were the norm. For those rare cases where I was not 1099d I self reported but never heard of someone wanting an SSN and then not sending out the proper forms. That said, I'd talk to the guy and find out what he intends to do. I've always preferred to be properly 1099'd (which as Dan mentioned is the requirement if you make over $600 regardless of whether or not incorporated or have withholdings taken out)... being 1099'd lets you sync up numbers and be sure you're not missing anything. It also helps show the that you really did have income and preform work in the event of a loss.
    - Ted S

  4. #4
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    Those who hire you and paid you over $600 and did not send you a 1099 is actually violating IRS regulations.

  5. #5
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    Most projects I work I do fill out a W9 when starting. I occasionally take on small projects for friends of friends etc between large projects to keep work flowing. This was one of those projects.

    The main issue with sending him my SS# is that he wants me to e-mail it.

    I have offered to give it to him over the phone, or set up an SSL encrypted login so he can download a W9 form from my website but he just replies put it in an email and send it to me he 'doesn't have time' to do anything else.

    Additionally, he owes me money from an invoice that is now 2yrs old and has recently not been making the agreed upon payments.

    In general, the situation with getting paid is slowly getting worse and that is why I am hesitant.

    Thanks for all the replies.

  6. #6
    SitePoint Zealot
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    Under the conditions you've outlined, I wouldn't give it to him.

    Goodness knows what he's going to do with it.

  7. #7
    Life is short. Be happy today! silver trophybronze trophy Sagewing's Avatar
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    It's his obligation to collect W9 information from you, and your obligation to give it to him if you are being payed over $600/year. This should have been done at the start of employment, and it's standard to withhold payment until you have a 1099 in (although at this point it's also kind of rude).

    If he is a slow payer and has a 2 year old outstanding invoice, you are working with a known slow-payer and can't really complain about it at this point. Drop him if you don't like it.
    The fewer our wants, the nearer we resemble the gods. Socrates

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  8. #8
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    He needs one of them to file the form and declare any payments to you

  9. #9
    Follow Me On Twitter: @djg gold trophysilver trophybronze trophy Dan Grossman's Avatar
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    Send your W9 along with a copy of your bill for the outstanding payments in the mail. Then he has no reason not to pay up.

  10. #10
    I Never Give Up roosevelt's Avatar
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    Do what the other experienced members here are telling you. Just a precaution I wouldn't give out SSN over the internet if that's what you are doing.


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