Working As An Independent Contractor Taxes – Are you an independent contractor? Find out what expenses are tax deductible and what tax credits you are entitled to in the tax period.
The deductible portion of the above expenses is equal to the percentage of your home office space relative to the total size of your home. For more information on Independent Contractors’ work-at-home deductions, see How to save on self-employment taxes in Canada
Working As An Independent Contractor Taxes
The above car expenses are deductible only to the extent that they were incurred for business purposes. For example, if you drove 50% for business, then 50% of your car expenses are deductible. Keep a diary to track the number of kilometers driven for business purposes. For more information on whether it’s better to lease or buy for tax purposes, see Leasing vs. Buying a Car
Income Tax Rates For The Self Employed 2020
Materials and tools purchased to perform the work are tax deductible. For example, a power drill, hammer, measuring table, landline phone, work phone or other supplies needed to perform job duties, depending on the job.
Computer purchases are deductible at 55% per annum for independent contractors. Computers include desktops, laptops, notebooks, tablets, as well as computer peripherals (e.g. scanner, printer, etc.).
The software is 100% tax free. However, only 50% of the amount can be claimed in the year of software purchase and the remaining 50% can be deducted the following year.
Travel expenses can be deducted as long as they are incurred for business purposes. For example, the cost of airfare and hotel accommodation for a business meeting can be deducted from the independent contractor’s tax return. I can’t go to Disneyland with my family.
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As a rule, independent contractors who spend on meals and entertainment can deduct 50% of these expenses. Money spent on personal meals and personal entertainment is not deductible. However, meals and entertainment expenses incurred for business purposes such as meeting customers, suppliers and prospects are deductible at 50%. Keep receipts as proof.
The general rule is that any expense incurred to generate business income, as long as the expense is reasonable, can be deducted.
The information provided on this page is general in nature. The information does not take into account your personal circumstances and is not intended to be used without consulting accountants and financial professionals. Allan Madan and Madan Chartered Accountant are not responsible for any problems arising from the use of the information contained on this website.
Allan Madan is a CPA, CA and the founder of Madan Chartered Accountant Professional Corporation. Allan provides valuable tax planning, accounting and income tax preparation services in the greater Toronto area. Independent contractors, freelancers, and business owners have a unique tax situation that can make tax time a little harder than regular full-time employees.
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It’s important to understand how much tax you’ll pay as an independent contractor, but it can be confusing. We’ve broken down what taxes independent contractors may pay this year and included some helpful tips to help you get the most out of your deductibles and credits.
If you’ve ever been a salaried or hourly employee, you’ve probably noticed a significant amount of money being deducted from your paychecks before you even have a chance to cash it in.
By law, employers are required to withhold a percentage of your income towards federal taxes, Social Security and Medicare contributions. That’s because the federal government doesn’t want to hope that consumers have saved enough money to cover their taxes by the end of the tax season.
The reason you may be able to get a tax refund after you file is because the limits on the percentage you can contribute from your tax mean you can overpay for a whole year.
What You Need To Know About Self Employment Tax (2023)
When you don’t have an employer, you are responsible for paying all your taxes. This means saving a percentage of your income to pay for federal and self-employment taxes that cover Social Security and Medicare payments. You will have to pay more taxes as an independent contractor as well.
As an employee, your employer is required to pay half of Social Security and Medicare. As an independent contractor, you will have to pay the full amount due. This is commonly referred to as “self-employment tax”.
As an independent business owner, you will have to pay 2 or 3 taxes depending on where you live: federal income tax, self-employment tax, and potentially state income tax. The self-employment tax rate for 2020 is 15.3% of your total taxable income, regardless of how much you earned.
Federal and state income taxes use a graduated scale to determine how much you’ll pay. This means that if you have earned more money, you will have to pay a higher percentage of your income, but only after a certain period of time. For example, if you earned $40,000 last year and looked at the federal income table, you can assume that you owe 22% of your taxable income because your income is in the tax bracket of $38,701 to $82,500.
Guide To Taxes For Independent Contractors (2023)
Fortunately, that’s not the case. You will pay 12% tax on the first $38,700 of your income and 22% on the remaining $1,300.
Each state may also impose its own income tax. States may use a progressive tax system similar to the federal tax rate, may set a flat percentage rate for all taxpayers, or may impose no income tax at all.
If you live in a state that has a progressive income tax, calculate your total taxable income when you file your tax return and find your state’s tax bracket. State tax brackets vary, so be sure to leave plenty of time to research how much you’ll owe before tax day arrives.
In exchange for higher tax burdens, independent contractors have much more freedom to deduct work-related expenses. “Deductions” are business expenses that reduce your total taxable income, reducing the amount of earned income you will have to pay tax on. For example, if you earned $50,000 last year and apply $20,000 of qualified deductions to your account, you will actually only have to pay state and federal income taxes on $30,000 of your income.
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If you are self-employed, you have the option of taking the standard deduction ($12,000 for single filers or $24,000 for couples filing jointly) or you can itemize your deductions and deduct each individual eligible expense. Some of the most common itemized deductions for independent contractors include:
If you have purchased a subscription to use a specific word processor or photo editing software, you can fully deduct the cost of the subscription as long as you use the program for work.
Have you attended a course or lecture to improve your skills? You can deduct the cost of the course along with any books or extra materials you had to purchase to successfully complete the course. You can also deduct the cost of other education-related materials you have purchased for a specific project or research purpose. For example, a bird book you bought to learn about birds before writing an aviary ad would be deductible, as would any magazine subscriptions you bought for further research.
There are a number of travel deductions you can take advantage of if you regularly travel to meet clients, work or perform away from home. If you drive, you can deduct the standard IRS mileage rate of 54.5 cents per mile driven for business purposes. If you are traveling by air or public transport, you can fully deduct the cost of your ticket and any excess baggage charges. The IRS also sets a standard hotel rate for each city if you need to be out of town for work.
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From pens to printers, office supplies costs are usually fully deductible as long as you use them solely for business purposes. If you have a high-value item, such as a laptop or smartphone, that you use during work hours and during your free time, you can deduct the expense as a percentage of the time you use that item for work.
For example, if you bought a laptop that you use for work 30 percent of the time and for personal use 70 percent of the time, you can deduct 30 percent of the cost of the laptop from your taxable income, as well as 30 percent of the cost of any accessories or chargers you need to buy to support him. These are just some of the most common deductions that independent contractors can and should take advantage of when filing their taxes. To learn more about deductions, see our article on the most common deductions for the self-employed.
Consider investing in self-employment tax software to make your life easier when it comes time to pay your taxes. The best independent contractor tax software comes pre-installed
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