What You Need to Know about Your Unemployment Compensation Benefits and Tax Stimulus Check
Perhaps You Were One of the Millions of Taxpayers Who Lost their Job, Had their Work Hours Reduced, or Were Self-Employed and Received UC Benefits
Understanding the Taxation of Federal and State UC Benefits and Stimulus Checks
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, millions of taxpayers who lost their jobs, had their hours reduced, or were self-employed and had their revenues decline received unemployment compensation (UC) benefits. Some taxpayers received the typical UC benefits paid by their state. Others may have also received federal UC benefits through their state’s UC website.
Are these UC benefits and stimulus check payments ($1,200 for individuals; $2,400 for married couples) that taxpayers received taxable income?
There is Good News! But alas, there is also some Bad News
The Good News
The Covid-19 stimulus checks are not taxable income. Your 2020 return (filed in 2021) will include a reconciliation so that if you received less than the full amount you were entitled to receive, an adjustment will be made to provide you with the full amount due you.
State taxation varies by state. If you are a PA resident, the good news is that any type of UC benefit received is non-taxable.
The Bad News
Unfortunately, both the state and federal UC benefits received are subject to federal income tax.
Tax Planning Tip #1
Now that the 2019 tax season is over, it is an opportune time to begin to plan for the 2020 tax season. You should make a Tax Folder that contains important tax documents that will be needed when your 2020 tax return is completed. You need to record the amount of the tax stimulus payment you received this year (if any) as that amount will be needed when completing your 2020 Form 1040.
Tax Planning Tip #2
Caution: Some states have stopped issuing Form 1099-G to show UC benefit payments paid to recipients. Accordingly, you need to track the UC dollar benefits you received and any income taxes withheld to file a complete and accurate 2020 return.
Tax Planning Tip #3
If you are in an installment payment plan with the IRS, remember that you must remain compliant by filing your tax returns and paying all of the taxes due each year. Since some taxpayers have no taxes withheld or have only 10% withheld from their UC benefits, they may find themselves with a balance due come April 15, 2021 which they are unable to pay in full. Be sure to make estimated tax payments or increase your tax withholdings to remain tax compliant or else the IRS may terminate your installment payment plan.
If you would like to discuss your business or personal tax planning, tax preparation and other financial concerns with an experienced tax professional, we invite you to call 610-594-2601 today to make an appointment at our Exton PA CPA office to discuss your situation. You can also schedule a consultation at Click Here.
About F. Bryan Haarlander, EA, CTRS:
Bryan Haarlander, an Enrolled Agent and a Certified Tax Resolution Specialist, is an affiliate member of the Suburban West Realtors® Association, a member of the American Society of Tax Problem Solvers (ASTPS), PA Society of Tax & Accounting Professionals (PSTAP), the National Society of Accountants (NSA) and the National Association of Tax Professionals (NATP). He is the author of “How to Resolve Your IRS Tax Debt Problems” as well as a book on how to start your own business. He has been practicing in Exton for 19 years. His firm serves clients in the western suburbs of Philadelphia, PA, which includes the cities of Chester Springs, Coatesville, Collegeville, Devon, Downingtown, Exton, Frazer, King of Prussia, Paoli, Philadelphia, Phoenixville, Pottstown, Radnor, Reading, Wayne, West Chester in Berks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia Counties, as well as clients in Delaware, New Jersey, New York and throughout the continental USA.
For individual tax payers, real estate professionals, contractors and other self-employed individuals with IRS tax debt issues or tax planning issues, feel free to contact me at (610) 594-2601 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Keystone Financial Solutions, Inc. specializes in providing innovative tax planning, tax preparation, and solving IRS tax debt problems. The company’s web site is https://www.keysolutions.us and its telephone number is (610) 594-2601.
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