Reporting Your Unemployment Benefits on Your 2020 Tax Return

Posted on: March 26, 2021

The information provided on this post does not, and is not intended to, represent legal advice. All information available on this site is for general informational purposes only.

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Do I need to pay taxes on my Unemployment Benefits?

Yes. Unemployment benefits are like wages, and you must report it as income on your tax return if you earned enough income to need to file taxes. BUT, the first $10,200 of unemployment benefits you received is not taxable by the IRS. If you received more than $10,200 in unemployment benefits, that will be taxed.

Do I get a special tax form for my Unemployment Benefits?

Yes. The Louisiana Workforce Commission (LWC) has begun the process of mailing out a 1099-G form to everyone who received unemployment benefits in 2020.

You can also get a copy online by logging into your HIRE account at louisianaworks.net.

Where do I find my 1099-G form in my HIRE account?

  1. When you log into your HIRE account, go the menu located on the left of your screen.
  2. Click on the option, “Services for Individuals.”
  3. Click “Unemployment Services.”
  4. You will then see several options, but you will one to click “Form 1099-G.”
  5. You will then be brought to a new page and will need to click “View” on the row marked 2020. This will give you a copy of your 1099-G form that you can print.

What amount do I need to report from my 1099-G form?

  • Individuals who are required to file a tax return must report the total show in Box 1 on the 1099-G form as income.
  • However, the first $10,200 of the unemployment benefit you received is not taxable income to the IRS and does not need to be reported if you have not opted into having your taxes withdrawn from your weekly benefit payments.

What if I already filed my taxes, do I need to make any changes?

  • On March 12, 2021, the IRS issued a statement that you do not need to make any changes to your return if you have already filed. If anything changes, the IRS will provide more information.
  • Click here for more information.

How do I know if the amount listed on my 1099-G form is correct?

If you have access to your HIRE account, you may want to look at your “Claim Summary” page to see the benefits you have been paid out throughout the weeks you have filed. Both your weekly benefit amount and your additional Loss Wage Assistance, (previous additional $300 weekly amount in August), and Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation, (previous $600 weekly benefit amount), are counted as benefits paid to you.

However, this option may not be helpful if you have received benefits under several unemployment programs in 2020. This is because Claimants often have their claim summary page refreshed, for example, when filing a new claim for an extension of benefits or consideration of another benefit program.

Are there other ways to know if the amount listed on your 1099-G is correct?

If you think the amount of benefits listed in your 1099-G is incorrect, you can contact the Unemployment Call Center at 866-783-5567 and request a “paper review.”

If an error is identified, the agency will take make the necessary corrections and issue a corrected 1099-G.

Should I file my taxes if the 1099-G amount information has not been corrected?

Maybe. If the issue is corrected before the filing deadline then you will want to wait until your receive your corrected 1099-G form.

But if the problem has not been corrected, the IRS advises that you may still file your federal income tax return, but to NOT place the amount that is listed in your 1099-G form. You will simply file your return without reporting your 1099-G information and you will need attach a statement to your tax return.

The statement will need to include why you are not reporting the 1099-G income. A copy of the confirmation you will receive from the LWC’s online fraud reporting form can serve as the written statement.

How do I report fraud?

You can report fraud using the forms that the Agency has provided here. You can also call 1-800-201-3362.

The agency encourages that you only submit this form once. You receive a confirmation email with more information on the next steps. This form can be if you received a 1099-G in error and you have not claimed any unemployment benefits in 2020.

What if I did not receive a confirmation email by the Agency after I filed my report for Fraud?

The agency suggests that you should submit the Identity Theft request again at the following link: https://www2.laworks.net/Forms/UI_ReportSuspectedFraudForm.asp

Saving the confirmation that you have submitted a request for Identity Theft and other report for fraud is important. Proof of these requests and reports can be helpful for tax purposes.

Other ways to report fraud:

  • You may file a report with your local law enforcement agency.
  • You can fill out the Office of Inspector General’s online Allegation Form, available at https://www.oig.dhs.gov/hotline.
  • Confirmation of a filed identity theft complaint with the Federal Trade Commission can be found at http://www.ftc.gov/. You will want to share that a person has used your personal information to receive public benefits.

What if I received a disqualification that led to an overpayment and/or I have repaid some (or all) of the overpayment? Do I need to have a corrected 1099-G form?

The Louisiana Workforce Commission is required by the IRS to put all benefit payments, including overpaid amounts on your 1099-G form. These benefits were paid out to you by the Agency and they will not issue a corrected 1099 if:

  • You were disqualified and received an overpayment amount and/or
  • If you have made any repayments to the Agency for an overpayment made against you.

 If I received back payments in 2021 for weeks that I was unemployed in 2020. Do I need a corrected 1099-G form?

No. These benefits have been paid to you in 2021 and not 2020. The Agency will need to report this information to the IRS next year for your 2021 income tax return and such amounts will be included in your 2021 1099- G form.

You may continue to use the original 1099-G form that was sent to you.

 

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