I am a resident alien of the USA (allowed to work) and I earn some money freelancing online. For a couple of months I have been writing blog posts for an individual who lives in Banglagesh (I'm not 100% sure, he could be anywhere). He is not a company, he is literally just a guy with a website, and he pays me to write and proofread content.

All communication is over WhatsApp and he pays me over PayPal from his personal PayPal. I've asked this question on another site and they said that what I earn is income (which is fine) and the payer (Bangladesh guy) needs to fill out a 1099 at the end of the year. But, English is not his strong suit and I can say there would be near 0% chance of getting this from him. I doubt I would even be in contact with him at the end of the year.

Does this still count as taxable income? How can I report it if it's not through an employer or a company etc.? He's paid me just over $1000 so far total.

1 Answer 1


Preface: I am not a tax professional. However, I have been a US-based freelancer for a couple decades now, including having some international clients.

1099s are not your problem when receiving income. Yes they can make it easier for you when you file, because it details the income you received from that party. As the recipient of any moneys, you don't have anything to do with any 1099 issuance.

As a freelancer, you don't need a 1099 to file any US taxes yourself. What you do need is a record of any income. That's all. So keep track of when and how much you were paid. When you file your taxes for the year there are areas for "additional" or "general" income. This is where you would report any income that is not related to any W2 or 1099.

Issuing a 1099 is a US tax regulation for companies which pay independent contractors / freelancers. US tax regulations have no bearing on anyone internationally. If you don't live in or have a business established within the US, you aren't required to abide by US tax regulations.

The guy really doesn't have to issue you any tax documents and the reality is, you don't need any from him.

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