Dealing with the loss of a job can be stressful, even if you’ve just been laid off. You’re struggling to figure out how to make ends meet, and in this time, unemployment benefits may be the answer to the help you seek. However, you need to remember that they are taxable.
When calculating your income for the year, you are required to include any compensation you receive from unemployment benefits. This amount should be reflected on a Form 1099-G, Certain Government Payments, which will detail any federal tax that was already withheld, and the benefit amount paid to you.
While there are a few different types of unemployment benefits, you should typically include any income paid to you under the unemployment law of either the federal or state government. Additionally, you should include benefits that were paid to you through a union. There are separate rules that apply to contributions made to specific union funds that are not deductible. For non-deductible contributions, you only have to include the income amount that is greater than the contribution you made.
You can opt to have federal tax withheld from unemployment benefits, using Form W-4V, Voluntary Withholding Request. Otherwise, you may be required to make payments based on an estimated tax amount.