1099 Form Best Practices


  • Do type or print entries with black ink only using a 10 pitch (pica) or 12 pitch (elite) font
  • Do make sure all copies are readable
  • Do include the decimal points (i.e. cents) in the monetary entries (0000.00)
  • Do verify that the filer’s name, address, and taxpayer identification number (TIN) are the same on both Form 1096 and the attached Forms 1099
  • Do leave a box blank if it doesn’t apply unless the instructions require that you enter a "0"
  • Do submit a separate Form 1096 with each type of return; for example, Forms 1099-INT and Forms 1099-MISC should each have a separate Form 1096
  • Do remove pin-feed strips before submission, without tearing the form; continuous forms must be burst apart prior to submission to the Internal Revenue Service
  • Do report information only in the appropriate boxes provided on the forms; make only one entry in each box unless otherwise indicated in the form’s specific instructions
  • Do use official forms or substitute forms that meet Internal Revenue Service specifications to avoid the assessment of a fine or penalty
  • Do send the forms to the Internal Revenue Service in a flat mailing (not folded)
  • Do use pre-printed red drop-out ink forms when filing Copy A of 1099 forms with the Internal Revenue Service


  • Don't send the same information to the Internal Revenue Service more than once
  • Don't change the title of any box on any form
  • Don't use dollar signs ($) (they are preprinted on the forms), ampersands (&), asterisks (*), commas (,), apostrophes ('), or other special characters in money amount boxes or payee name line
  • Don't use number signs (#) in any field
  • Don't use a form to report information that is not properly reportable on that form
  • Don't cut or separate Copy A of the 1099 forms that are printed two or three to a sheet; if at least one form on the page is correctly completed, you must submit the entire page
  • Don't submit any copy other than Copy A to the Internal Revenue Service
  • Don't send photocopies of any forms
  • Don't staple, tear, or tape any 1099 forms. It will interfere with the Internal Revenue Service’s ability to scan the documents
  • Don't use prior year forms unless you are reporting prior year information; always use the current year form to report current year information