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Big band and taxes

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Ozonbass, Apr 15, 2014.


  1. Ozonbass

    Ozonbass Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2007
    Location:
    Chicago
    I did a search for tax liability but maybe this situation is just strange enough to not find much helpful.

    I play in a 20 piece community big band. We play mostly summer gigs, outside festivals or retirement centers. Usually for free, sometimes the place will give us $100-$200 or so. The money all buys new charts and we have never been paid individually for a show.

    However, a new place is asking about completing W-9 form for the band (on a $200 donation...their words).

    Any thoughts or suggestions?
     
  2. Slough Feg Bass

    Slough Feg Bass

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2007
    Location:
    San Francisco
    they gotta track that stuff, someone needs to be responsible.
    file as an artist and do a schedule C.
     
  3. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Joined:
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    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    Here, let me Google that for you.

    They need it for their records, otherwise it just looks like $200 fell out of their pocket. You can either tell them that the community band doesn't have a tax ID because it doesn't exist as a corporate entity and see what the comeback is OR somebody in the band bites the bullet and uses their Social Security number and gets the check and the 1099. If you go the second route I HIGHLY SUGGEST having the maximum amount withheld so you don't 1. get hit for paying tax on this and 2. having to fill out a Schedule C in order to deduct business expenses against this. For $200 it is just not worth the headache.
     
  4. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Supporting Member

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    Alexandria,VA
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    I'm not a tax expert by any means, but my understanding is that a 1099 is only required if you have paid more than $600 to a person or organization for rent or services. In this situation, a 1099/W9 isn't needed since it doesn't meet the minimum threshhold.
    http://www.irs.gov/instructions/i1099msc/ar02.html

    I don't know what kind of entity the community band is, but donations to charitable organizations of $250 and under don't require substantiation.
    http://www.irs.gov/Charities-&-Non-...ns-Substantiation-and-Disclosure-Requirements
     
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  6. hennessybass

    hennessybass Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2008
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    My best advice in this situation is to find one guy to bight the bullet, give up a social, and take the tax hit. Give that guy $50 out of the $200, and take the remaining $150 and buy charts or what ever you do with it.
     
  7. hennessybass

    hennessybass Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2008
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    The W9 is required for the employers records. The 1099 is for your records that your "employer" sends you. They don't have to send you a 1099 if pay is less than $600. But you still have to report that income. You are responsible for keeping your own records, and are supposed to report them.
     
  8. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Supporting Member

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    Sure, of course. But, it doesn't have to be substantiated by a W9/1099.
     
  9. DWBass

    DWBass The Funkfather Supporting Member

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    Jan 24, 2003
    Location:
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    Kohlman Bassworks
    Is your band a charitable organization? If not, they have to 1099 you but it's not actually a donation. You are being hired as a contractor. They have their info wrong. $200 split with 20 people is $10 each. Whoever bites the bullet (most likely the band leader) can expense it. 1099 Misc. But they may not send out a 1099 since it's way under the $600 threshold. Won't affect your taxes much anyway. Just an extra form to fill out.
     
  10. hennessybass

    hennessybass Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2008
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    I've got it...

    You could funnel that money into some kind of off shore account. Have a high priced accountant massage the numbers, then, bring it back to the states to buy your charts. If you do it this way, you will hardly have to pay any taxes at all!!

    Oh wait... that's right, you are doing charity work for your community... we're going to need you to pay the maximum amount and fill out lots of confusing paperwork.

    No good deed goes unpunished:rollno:
     
  11. Ozonbass

    Ozonbass Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2007
    Location:
    Chicago
    Thanks for the replies. We've been doing this for 10 years or so and this is the first time it's come up. Good info though...I have a good tax attorney... Call is in to him too. Probably cause more confusion lol.
     

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