Trump Tax Plan Changes for 1099 Workers

This post is in: Blog, Business

If you work as a 1099 worker or independent contractor, this info is for you. If your employer has given you a choice of working as an employee or Form 1099 worker, then pay attention. This info is for you. The answer may surprise you.

The Trump Tax Plan took effect January 1, 2018. Even though it may not seem like much has changed, it has. It’s just that you probably won’t see the changes until next year when you file your tax return.

One of the big changes is the 20% income reduction. If you are a 1099 worker who did not form a corporation, your business income and deductions would be reported on a Schedule C on your personal tax return.

The 20% income reduction is only for pass-through entities, like the Schedule C business.

So, as a 1099 worker, your business will qualify for that income reduction. That means if you make $50,000 after expenses, you only pay tax on $40,000. (The $50,000 is reduced by $50,000 * 20%) That’s a great deal!

There are some rules. First of all, look at the amount of money you make over all. Near the top of page 2 of your Form 1040, you’ll find your taxable income. If your taxable income is under $315,000 (married filing jointly or $157,500 (single), you will qualify for the reduction.

Please note that this is your total taxable income, not just the income from the business. If you have a lot of other income, you could be over that amount.

If your income is over the threshold, you need to then look at whether you have a service business or a product business. If you’re a 1099 worker, that means you are a service worker. And at the higher income threshold, you now have a problem getting that 20% income reduction.

That’s when it’s time to talk to a CPA who is familiar with the new rules. You probably need to think about changing your business structure. For example, if you formed an LLC and elected to be taxed as an S Corporation, you’ll save on self-employment tax and maybe get the 20% income reduction back.


  1. Diane Kennedy says:

    Ted –

    Page 1 of Schedule E would be used to report rental income/loss. The 2nd page show the income from pass-through entities (partnerships, S Corps, some trusts, etc)

    Rental income and pass-through income is eligible as well for the 20% reduction. I’ll write another blog specifically on that in the near future (probably this weekend). It has it’s own set of peculiarities.

  2. Diane Kennedy says:

    Bbob Martin –

    I hadn’t heard about that! Do you know which 1099 they are sending and which box on the form they’re using? There is a requirement for credit card processors, PayPal, etc to report, but I’d never heard of anyone using a 1099-MISC for products. Interesting.

  3. Ted says:

    Do these same rules apply if your self-employed income runs through Schedule E? Should (or can) this income be passed through as Schedule C earnings? In our weekly vacation rental business, there are some minimal personal services provided…linens, cleaning, etc.

  4. Bbob Martin says:

    Some buyers of product have been sending out 1099s to their vendors.

  5. Diane Kennedy says:

    In the definition of Section 199A, you have a service business or a product business.

    If you receive a 1099-MISC (1099 worker) for your work, you have a service.

    Have you received a Form 1099 for products you’ve sold?

  6. In the article it says “if you’re a 1099 worker, that means you are a service worker.” Where in the law does it say a 1099 worker is a service worker ??

  7. Diane Kennedy says:

    Hi Dave –

    The first thing to look at will be your taxable income. If you’re under the income threshold ($315K for married, filing jointly/ $157.5 for single), you can reduce your Schedule C income by 20% for tax purposes. It doesn’t impact your other income (W-2, interest, dividends, etc)

    If you’re over the income threshold, then you have to qualify with the wage limitation, limited to the greater of 50% of W-2 wages paid or 25% wages paid + 2.5% of depreciable assets.

  8. My “side gig” company, Dave’s RVs is an LLC that rents out RVs. Income to Dave’s RVs is reported as a “pass through” to Schedule C on my return. So… do I get the 20% reduction in taxes?
    Feel free to email me

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