Beginning in calendar year 2022, crowdfunding websites or their payment processors may be required to report certain distributions of money raised if the contributor receives goods or services for its contribution and the amount distributed meets Form 1099-K reporting thresholds. For calendar years 2022 and later, the threshold for filing Form 1099-K will be met where the total of all payments distributed to a person exceeds $600 in gross payments, regardless of the number of transactions or donations.
According to the American Rescue Plan Act, a crowdfunding website or its payment processor is not required to file Form 1099-K with the IRS or furnish it to the person to whom distributions are made if the contributors to the crowdfunding campaign do not receive goods or services for their contributions. Crowdfunding websites receive contributions from contributors for certain purposes. When distributed, some are treated as gifts.
Generally, under federal tax law, property received as a gift is not includible in the gross income of the person receiving the gift. In the context of crowdfunding, this happens where the contributions are a result of detached and disinterested generosity on behalf of the contributor, and the contributor does not receive or expect anything in return. Here, the amounts contributed may be gifts and may not be includible in the gross income of those for whom the campaign was organized. Further, where a crowdfunding organizer solicits contributions on behalf of others and distributes the money raised to those for whom the campaign was organized, those distributions may not be includible in the gross income of the organizer.
Other crowdfunding contributions have different purposes, such as where the contributor receives goods or services for their contributions. This would result in reportable income. Here when the crowdfunding website or its payment processor distributes this money and it meets the reporting threshold, then they are required to file a Form 1099-K with the IRS. If the crowdfunding website or its payment processor makes the distribution of money to the organizer of the crowdfunding, then the crowdfunding website or its payment processor must furnish a copy of the Form 1099-K to the organizer. If the distributions of the money raised are made directly to individuals or businesses for whom the organizer solicited funds, then the Form 1099-K must be furnished to those individuals or businesses that receive amounts that meet the reporting threshold.