TurboTax FAQ
TurboTax FAQ
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Am I considered self-employed?

Sole proprietor, independent contractor, consultant and freelancer are all terms used to describe self-employed workers. Whether you do it full-time or on the side—if you’re an independent worker like an Uber/Lyft driver, web designer, tutor, or babysitter—you’re self-employed.

You may not think of yourself as running a business, but you’re considered self-employed if you engage in business-like activities.

Three key factors that generally define an activity as a business:

  • You intend to make a profit (even if you operate at a loss).
  • Your activities are regular.
  • You make efforts to sustain or grow your business.

Situations where you wouldn't be considered self-employed:

  • You mowed your elderly neighbor's lawn all summer, and he gave you money as a token of his appreciation. (You didn't intend to make a profit.)
  • You were paid to tutor a friend's child, but you’re not going to do it again. (Your activities are not regular.)
  • You draw for fun, and your friend paid you to create a poster for a birthday party. (You're not making efforts to sustain or grow a business.)

When you’re self-employed, you’re likely to receive a 1099-MISC or a 1099-K. Even if you don’t receive these forms, you still need to report all your income from self-employment.

 


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