This is the time of year when most people file their taxes. If you’ve been an unemployment benefit recipient in 2006, you are not exempt from paying taxes.You’ll need a New York 1099 form to file your tax return. The New York Dept. of Labor sent the 2007 1099 forms to everyone in January.
If for some reason you haven’t received this statement, all you need to do is contact your nearest New York Dept. of Labor office. A 1099 will be sent to you, typically within a week. If needed, you can also request 1099 statements from previous years for your personal records.
Many people choose not to have state and federal taxes taken off their unemployment compensation. This way they have more money when they need it the most. But they still need to pay their state and federal taxes, and payment time is around this time of year.
If you’re a New York resident that fits into this category, you’ll need a 1099 form to file your taxes. The 2007 1099 statements were sent to everyone who received unemployment benefits in 2006. The statements include the amount of compensation paid, as well as any deductions. Deductions could include such payments as court ordered restitution and court ordered child support.
Besides New York unemployment recipients and unemployment recipients from other states, self-employed individuals also need to file 1099 forms when they file their taxes.
Unlike unemployment benefit recipients, independent contractors are required to make quarterly estimated income tax benefits if their earnings are high enough.
Workers who are considered employees don’t need to worry about 1099 statements when filing their taxes. Their annual earnings and deductions are recorded in a W-2, which is provided by their employers.
New York also provides complete information on any unearned payments to the IRS and the state’s Dept. of Revenue.
Of course, employers, remember not to get the hopes up of your employees, or former employees, because just because they live in these two counties in the state of New York, and lived there last November 2006 during the floods, does not mean that they automatically get federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance payments. They have to meet several qualifications in order to get the Disaster Unemployment Assistance.
First and foremost, their unemployment has had to have been a direct result of the floods of the past November. For instance, the person could have been directly injured because of the flooding of the severe storms, and that injury is now preventing them from working at their previous job. That would be a prime example of how someone could earn the right to collect Disaster Unemployment Assistance.
For another reason, we could suggest that the employee would have their place of work completely destroyed by the storm and or floods, or at least damaged enough that they cannot be in business for a while. Another option is that the flooding destroyed the roads or shut down the public transportation that the worker needs to reach their place of work. Or even, let’s say that the flood wrecked the employee’s car, and that was their only means of getting to work, and they can neither afford to fix the car, or buy a new one—and they are waiting on or did not have insurance. That scenario might also grant the person the right to collect federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance.
Another scenario is if a person was just about to start a new job, but then the disaster struck, and the employer either is closed or cannot afford to hire the new person now. Then that person could get the Disaster Unemployment Assistance.
So it behooves employers in the state of New York who know some of their former or current employees who suffered economically, or still are suffering, from this storm to instruct these workers to get in touch with the New York State Labor Department. There is no cost to the employer to get this money for the employees, nor is there any cost for the employees themselves. The federal government picks up the tab.
The instructions from the New York State Department of Labor are to contact them at their toll free number of 888-209-8124. They should call between 8 in the morning to 5 in the afternoon, Monday and Tuesday only, if they want to file a claim with the Disaster Unemployment Assistance system. When they call, employees should be sure to let the phone operator know that they are calling for the Disaster Unemployment Assistance because of the flooding disaster in New York state.
If the person is eligible to receive this aid, then they have to wait a whole week without getting paid to get the federal payments. If it is determined that the person should be getting federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance, and not regular unemployment assistance, then they will be sent an application in the mail.
The application will ask for their Social Security number, their New York state driver’s license number, their mailing address and zip code, their best telephone number to contact, their alien registration card (or green card) if they have one, as well as the names, contact information, and addresses of all of their employers from the last year and a half, even if they were in another state besides New York.
One of the reasons that employers would want to encourage their employees or former employers to apply is because then their unemployment payments would not be credited against you.
We know how the unemployment system works. We all have to have the unemployment labor law poster in our work sites, and we must pay on a quarterly basis, usually, the unemployment insurance benefit, which is a percentage of our payroll based on what industry we are in, how new of an employer we are, how well we have paid our taxes in the past, and how many folks we generally have been laying off in the recent past.
But in certain cases, employers are not necessarily to “blame” for laying a worker off—and even in most cases, blame might not be the right word, but I don’t want to get into a semantic or a political debate here. But in these certain cases I am talking about, natural disasters step in and lead to mass layoffs and unemployment in a certain area. We saw in it the Gulf Coast communities of Mississippi, Alabama, and New Orleans after the hurricanes of 2005.
And most recently, we saw it in Alabama and Florida after the terrible tornadoes that touched down there earlier in 2007, killing many people but shutting down towns and businesses there as well.
Such is a similar situation in New York state, though it is not quite as dramatic as Hurricane Katrina or a 200 mile per hour tornado. No, the situation in New York state is because of severe storms and floods that hit the state in November of 2006, in the counties of Broome and Chenango. These storms and floods, though, were severe and dramatic enough for the local communities affected by them. Some of my sources even called the flooding “unprecedented.”
Anyway, these counties were declared federal disaster areas by the president in December of 2006. That means folks in these areas affected by the storm could be eligible for Disaster Unemployment Assistance, and the New York State Labor Department is responsible for dispersing these funds.
Several areas in the U.S. have been decimated by winter storms, with some areas in New York among the hardest hit. Recently U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao announced a $1,246,750 grant for the state of New York to create approximately 150 temporary jobs to assist with cleanup and recovery efforts following damage caused by severe snowstorms and flooding.
These funds will directly benefit unemployed workers in New York who were affected by the severe winter storms. “There is still work to be done in western New York to help areas recover from damage caused by severe snowstorms and flooding,” said Secretary Chao. “This $1.2 million grant will put New Yorkers to work assisting their communities and will provide other helpful services to residents.”
The New York unemployment grant is directed to 4 counties that have been declared eligible. On Oct. 24, 2006, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) declared the counties of Erie, Genesee, Niagara and Orleans as eligible for its public assistance program.
The temporary jobs created under the New York unemployment grant plan will be targeted for workers dislocated as a result of the snowstorms and flooding. Other dislocated workers, and the long-term unemployed will also be eligible under the plan. Jobs will likely include clearing debris from public and non-profit-owned property. Funds may be used to perform work on the homes of economically disadvantaged individuals whose homes were damaged by the storms.
In addition to the creation of temporary jobs, the grant, which was awarded to the New York State Department of Labor, also may be used for workforce development services for participants who need assistance to return to employment. Such services would include assessment tests, career counseling and training. National Emergency Grants are part of the Secretary of Labor’s discretionary fund and are awarded based on a state’s ability to meet specific guidelines.