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Third parties, often businesses, reported more than $6 trillion in miscellaneous income payments to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in tax year 2006 on Form 1099-MISC. Payees are to report this income on their tax returns. It has been long known that if these payments are not reported on 1099-MISCs, it is less likely that they will be reported on payee tax returns. In 2010, the reporting requirements were expanded to cover payments for goods and payments to corporations, both previously exempt, beginning in 2012. This testimony summarizes recent GAO reports and provides information on (1) benefits of the current requirements in terms of improved compliance by taxpayers and reduced taxpayer recordkeeping, (2) costs to the third-party businesses of the current 1099-MISC reporting requirement, and (3) options for mitigating the reporting burden for third-party businesses. GAO has not assessed the expansion of 1099-MISC reporting to payments for goods.

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