Claim Tips on your Tax Return- How and When to Report Tips to manage Tax

According to the IRS, tips and taxable income are considered as wages. If you wish to earn more tips, you are entitled to pay ‘Social Security’, ‘paying income’, and ‘Medicare tax’. Surely, working for generating enough tips is hard and also, requires acting in pertinence to tax principles. Look for information down below to claim tips on your designed tax return.

Step 1

Keep a record about tip income

As per the policy furnished by the IRS, you need to report the entire monthly tips to the respective employer. By the 10th of every month, your employer must acknowledge the total monthly tips. If you fail to document your information about the tips to your employer, it can lead to serious consequences.  As a result, the IRS may impose a penalty or may also charge 50 percent of the total Medicare tax and Social Security.

Step 2

Keep a constant track of various kinds of tips

Tips that you share with other employees are also necessary to report. You can work it on by managing the reduction with the help reportable tips if you have records of sharing tips.  For example, if you get an amount of $125 as a tip, and provide the bartender and busboy only $35 as a tip-sharing, then you only require to furnish the report of $90 as tip amount.

Step 3

Check your W-2 while receiving

The W-2 will show automatically how much tax you need to pay or still owe. If you didn’t receive or earn enough in wages (tips) that your employer provides as a payment, it directly helps to manage your tax withholding.

Step 3

For unreported tip income-fill out Form 4137

This feature will ensure those months when your tips are considerably less than $20. Furthermore, if you receive any noncash tips, it doesn’t count as a value.  Just add the amount (tips in cash) as a reported wage to receive total taxable income. Therefore, Form 4137 helps to manage such tips as it includes guidelines for estimating the Medicare tax and Social Security to pay as per your unreported (non-cash tips) tip income.

Step 4

Learn what counts as a Tip

As we already know, Tips are counted as income and taxable. With the term Tips, we often relate cash that customers pay as a sign of gratitude for the service. Usually, tips are of different forms, such as customers leaving cash, distributed tips from the employer, tips that customers add to debit as well as credit card charges, and tips shared by other employees. On the other hand, Service charges are not counted as tips as the fees that are automatically added to a bill of the customer, technically aren’t termed as tips according to the IRS. Some examples of service charges are as follows:

  • Room service charges
  • Bottle service charges
  • An automatic gratuity added for large parties
  • Delivery charges

With a set hourly wage as well as tips, all the tipped workers usually make money. Therefore, many employees receive their share of tips at the end of their everyday shift, but the taxes are not counted until the employees report the tips. It is imperative for the employer to document the related payroll taxes while issuing the paychecks. It may be a tempting option to avoid the reporting tips or monthly hassle to note tips, but that could bring subsequent damages in the sales tax filing, and haunt you through your own credit and debit cards and leave you with other paper trails.