Sharing Economy Encouraged To Share With And By The IRS

Barry Fowler

If you’ve ever been picked up by an Uber driver or know someone who’s rented a room through Airbnb, then you are aware of the ‘sharing economy.’

In the past few years, the ‘sharing economy’ has become a targeted focal point for the IRS. Needless to say, they really want their “fair share” of this rapidly growing business segment.

Necessity truly is the mother of invention. And, the downturn in the economy has given birth to these exciting new ways for people to make some extra money.

However, it has been nearly impossible for the IRS to track the income received by those who rent out a room through Airbnb or drive people around through services like Uber.

So, according to a recent article in the Washington Examiner, in an attempt to be perceived as helpful, the IRS launched a new “sharing economy resource center.” The article also states that the new resource center, “is meant to help Uber drivers, those who use online services to help rent out rooms for a few days at a time, and others keep track of their taxes and pay up. For people performing these services and getting paid a little bit at a time, the IRS stressed that there are new tax issues they need to understand. In years past, a person performing part-time work up to a certain point would get a 1099 form from the employer that reports on the wages paid out.” In addition the article claims that, “It’s also aimed at the sharing economy companies that employ people for these micro service jobs.”

The IRS will catch up with this new segment of the economy eventually.

Barry Fowler is licensed to represent taxpayers before the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and is a longstanding member of several tax industry professional organizations including the National Association of Enrolled Agents (NAEA), National Association of Tax Preparers (NATP), Texas Society of Enrolled Agents (TSEA), and the American Society of Tax Problem Solvers (ASTPS). With experience in the tax and finance industry spanning over twenty years, Fowler’s expertise includes tax resolution, personal financial planning, tax return preparation, financial statements, and general ledger bookkeeping. He has been instrumental in helping hundreds of people resolve complex tax issues with the IRS.

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1 comment on “Sharing Economy Encouraged To Share With And By The IRS”

  • Hello Barry, Good post & information.What do you think about income from sales on Ebay? Do you think the IRS would view that in similar light? As of now, I have heard that Ebay issues a Form 1099-K to the sellers only when sales value is $20,000 or more AND there are more than 200 transactions? Do you see this coming up as part of the “gig economy” IRS is targeting?

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