Til this past December, I was a staff editor at a popular NY post-house. Since, I've been freelancing at several post-houses, including the one that I used to staff at.
I was recently contacted by the head of that post-house, and was told that I needed to submit a W4 and an NYS IT-2104 to them, so that they could take out taxes on my freelance earnings. I am not incorporated, and the post-house had said that freelancers that they use who are incorporated do not have to go through this step. But for those few freelancers they use who are not incorporated, these tax forms need to be filled out.
My Spidey-sense got tingling when I noticed that all the tax forms specifically referred to employee status; and since none of the other post-houses I frequently freelance at have ever asked for anything like this.
Does my Spidey-sense have too sensitive a trigger-finger, or is this something to contact my tax attorney about?
[Ed Kulzer]"Does my Spidey-sense have too sensitive a trigger-finger, or is this something to contact my tax attorney about?"
Yes, your Spidey-sense is a tad over-active. Both the Feds and Staties have, over the last eight years, shifted their focus from trying to collect taxes from rich tax avoiders, to collecting from middle class tax avoiders before it ever gets into their clammy little hands.
The government has also shifted the burden of collecting those taxes to the employer, by making it incumbent upon them to treat freelancers, such as yourself, like employees, even if that is not actually the case. It's all about the government getting their mitts on your dough and making you have to work to to get it back after they've had use of it.
So, your tax guy may be able to get you a tax refund after you file, but I seriously doubt he can circumvent the new government strategy, designed expressly for getting their hands on your dough right at the source.
David Roth Weiss
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
POST-PRODUCTION WITHOUT THE USUAL INSANITY ™
A forum host of Creative COW's Apple Final Cut Pro, Business & Marketing, and Indie Film & Documentary forums.
A few years ago when I went to college with the big boys; I learned in the accounting course that a Sole Proprietor, Free Lancer, or Independent Contractor worked for Profit and not for wages, salaries, or earnings. What you are telling me suggests that an additional burden is being imposed and that additional fees to pay for this imposition are required. What other suggestion do you have on going about the profit available from these additional product requirement?