Fill out W-9 correctly and avoid risks

W-9 form is requested to fill out whenever an individual subcontractor receives an income for performing a certain work or project, and that amount exceeds $600 per one tax year.

In fact, completing a fillable W-9 form is not a difficult task. It requires only the basic information any freelancer can provide. The business is responsible to report the IRS about every freelancer it has dealt with. The freelancer’s name, address, and the TIN are necessary here.

Obligations for filling

The party paying a freelancer is in charge of requesting the necessary information to complete the PDF W-9. All the data included in the paper is saved for utilizing it later in the information returns such as the 1098 or 1099. The latter is issued to both the IRS and the freelancer at the end of the tax year. Other cases, when the paper type is requested, include:

  • Property transactions
  • Debt cancellation
  • Contributions to IRA
  • Secured property
  • Secured property dereliction


Filling Out W-9 Form

For a decent completion of IRS form type, one needs to be simply concentrated and accurate to avoid any risks. If it’s you who is completing the typable form, start by entering your name. Afterward, you will need to provide your company’s name. Quite often, organizations use other names than their owns to present their business. This is a widespread marketing step. After it, it’s crucial to check the appropriate box meeting your business type – C/S corporation, partnership, sole proprietorship, etc. The next box is dedicated to the exemptions. The latter is quite often left empty.

Your next step will be stating your physical address including the state, city, address and zip code. In case you doubt whether to mention your home’s or organization’s address, we’ll hurry to inform, that the address you intend to use on your tax return is to be mentioned.

The next step is optional. The following box is designed to contain the name and address of the person who requested the W-9 from you. If you find you may need this data later as a record who has your TIN, go ahead and fill out this box, too. The Part I section requests to state your business’s TIN. Depending on its type, the later is either the SSN or EIN. If your business is new and no employer identification number is available yet, that section is to be filled with “applied for”.

And the final section named as Part II is requests to sign you confirm what you have mentioned in all parts above. Sign if you are sure you were true. Remember that by stating the wrong TIN (“borrowed”, stolen, fake, etc.) you will be a subject to backup withholding at best, and imprisoned at worst. Another point to remember is that the document is for USA citizens.