Have You Received All of Your Bank 1099s? And Are They Correct?
By this time you should have all of your 1099s from your banks and credit unions. The IRS requires financial institutions to mail 1099s to recipients by January 31. One thing that can complicate receiving a 1099 is when banks fail or merge. A reader emailed me about his wait for his 1099-INT from Home Savings of America. The bank failed last February, and it was one of the rare failures without an acquisition. Thus, it's the FDIC that is sending out the 1099-INT and 1098 forms. The reader said he called the FDIC customer service (888-206-4662), and he was told that the FDIC had mailed the 1099s on January 31st. So if one of your banks had failed last year and was not acquired, expect a 1099 from the FDIC.
A more common complication is when banks merge. For these cases, you may receive a 1099 from a bank or credit union that you don't recognize. A reader emailed me last week asking about Berkshire Bank. He received a 1099 from that bank, but he didn't know he had an account there. It turns out Berkshire Bank acquired Beacon Federal last October. So if you had an account at Beacon Federal (like its reward checking account), you probably received a 1099 from Berkshire.
One thing that can help keep you updated on changes at your bank is our Bank Alerts service. Just search for your bank in the Bank Alerts page, and click the "Receive Bank Alerts" button on that bank's page.
Don't forget that you may also receive 1099s from banks where you earned a bonus (like a checking account bonus). That's even the case when the bonus isn't cash. Last year Citibank received a lot of publicity when it began issuing 1099 forms for miles awarded for opening new checking and savings accounts. There were also worries that banks may send 1099s for miles awarded from credit cards. However, reports suggested that remains unlikely. If you have received a 1099 on any credit card bonus, please leave a comment.
If you didn't receive a 1099 in the mail, you may have to log into your bank account to access the 1099. I had to log into my accounts at ING DIRECT (now Capital One 360) and FNBO Direct, to access my 1099s. I even have one credit union that requires me to log in to access my 1099. I assume I gave these institutions my permission to deliver 1099s online instead of by mail. I actually prefer that since I don't have to worry about the 1099 being lost in the mail or delivered to the wrong house.
If you still can't find your 1099 even after you log into your account, it might be due to the total interest that you earned at that bank for 2012 being less than $10. Banks are not required to issue 1099-INTs when the total interest is less than $10. With the very low interest rates, this might be a common occurrence.
Once you confirm that you received all of your 1099s, it's a good idea to check the amount of interest that was reported. Last year Ally Bank wrongly reported CD interest for 2 percent of its CD customers.
Have you had any problems with your bank 1099s this year?
Edit 2/8/13: Added paragraph on bank alerts.