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If you receive a Form 1099-MISC with an amount in Box 7 for nonemployee compensation, the IRS position is that you have your own small business.

Your "business" is whatever you do to earn the income that is reported to you on the Form 1099-MISC, Box 7. When you complete the Schedule C section of the Federal Q&A, proceed as though you have your own business for tax purposes. 

For example:

  • On the screen Business Income - Principal Business, enter a description that indicates what you did to earn the income reported to you on the Form 1099-MISC
  • On the screen Business Income - Business Activity Code, select the code that best indicates what you did to earn the income reported to you on the Form 1099-MISC
  • On the screen Business Income - Employer ID Number, only enter one if you have an official, IRS-issued Employer ID Number (EIN) that you requested (don't enter the number listed on the Form 1099-MISC). Note. If you don't have an IRS-issued EIN, leave this field blank. DO NOT enter your social security number.
  • On the screen Business Income - Business Name, only enter information if the name and address of your "business" is different from your own name and address. 

Note. You may not consider the work you did as part of having your own "business", but the IRS does if your income from that work is reported to you on Form 1099-MISC. If you don't have a different business name and address, just leave the name and address fields on this screen blank. Your own name and address will be used by default. Do not enter the business information for the person or company who paid you and issued the Form 1099-MISC. For tax purposes in this case, you are the business. The payer's information would only be entered on the screen Form 1099-MISC - Payer's Information, as the entity (payer) that issued you the Form 1099-MISC.

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