AMEX sending out 1099s for referral bonuses

Old Jan 31, 2019, 6:25 pm
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AMEX sending out 1099s for referral bonuses

Apparently, we'll now pay tax on the imputed cash value of AMEX referral bonuses:

"American Express is sending out Form 1099 for referral bonuses earned during the calendar year 2018. Amex values Hilton points at 1.25 cents per point, and all other points at 1 cent per point;that includes things like Membership Rewards, Delta, SPG, and Marriott points. Not sure why they decided to value Hilton at more than 1 cent.

Youll get a separate Form 1099 for each card you referred from, I believe. Apparently, these are being sent out even for those who did not get $600 total. ($600 is the threshold where they are required to send out the form assuming this qualifies as a cash value.) They are sending the forms even for un-cash-out points as well, apparently."

https://www.doctorofcredit.com/ameri...ng-else-1-cpp/
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Old Jan 31, 2019, 6:47 pm
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See also this discussion from 2017 to understand what's new -and- what is not:

https://www.doctorofcredit.com/banks...erral-bonuses/
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Old Jan 31, 2019, 7:19 pm
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The real joke is $0.0125/Hilton point
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Old Jan 31, 2019, 7:23 pm
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Originally Posted by javabytes
The real joke is $0.0125/Hilton point
Seriously! I'd go all the way to Appeals on this valuation. LOL
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Old Jan 31, 2019, 7:30 pm
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I would be happy to sell all my Hilton points back to AMEX at $0.01 a point.
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Old Jan 31, 2019, 7:46 pm
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Inasmuch as Hilton sells points for $0.01, currently with a bonus that nets the cost to $0.005, it's difficult to understand how $0.0125 would be assigned.
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Old Jan 31, 2019, 10:43 pm
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Originally Posted by javabytes
The real joke is $0.0125/Hilton point
Originally Posted by mia
Inasmuch as Hilton sells points for $0.01, currently with a bonus that nets the cost to $0.005, it's difficult to understand how $0.0125 would be assigned.
Doctor of Credit fixed his article and said they value is actually $0.67. I still think that is too high, but it is more reasonable I guess.
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Old Jan 31, 2019, 11:44 pm
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Does this include business cards? If so, is the 1099 using the EIN or SSN?
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Old Feb 2, 2019, 4:29 pm
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1099 for the 75,000 Delta Airlines bonus miles for meeting the spend requirement

I received an IRS form 1099 for $375 for the 75,000 Delta Airlines bonus miles I received for meeting the spend requirement, valuing them at 1/2 cent/mile. I have written a protest letter to Amex at the address on the 1099. Never has Amex or any other credit card issuer issued a 1099 for bonus miles for meeting a spend requirement.

Interestingly, the 1099 for Membership Rewards point for referrals to cards that earn MR points values those points at 1 cent/mile. Yet those points convert to Delta miles at 1,000:1,000. Thus they are saying definitively that the Membership Rewards points have the same value as Delta miles, or cent per point.

I have sent a protest for both of these 1099s to the address on the 1099. I encourage you to do the same.

Last edited by pgary; Feb 2, 2019 at 4:51 pm
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Old Feb 2, 2019, 5:16 pm
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Originally Posted by pgary
I received an IRS form 1099 for $375 for the 75,000 Delta Airlines bonus miles I received for meeting the spend requirement....
Are you certain the 1099 is not for referral bonuses earned on Skymiles cards?
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Old Feb 2, 2019, 6:48 pm
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Originally Posted by mia
Are you certain the 1099 is not for referral bonuses earned on Skymiles cards?
The 1099 did say it was for referral bonuses, but I did no referrals to that card. Since the spend bonus was 75K and the charge was $375, exactly 1/2 cent/mile, and since I know of no referral bonuses that add up to 75K or any combination that gets to an even fraction of that, I assumed....
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Old Feb 2, 2019, 6:52 pm
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Here is an excellent article from Travel Codex on how to deal with this from someone who says he is a licensed tax professional.
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Old Feb 2, 2019, 7:09 pm
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Originally Posted by pgary
The 1099 did say it was for referral bonuses.....
It looks as if you can login here:

https://www.delta.com/acctactvty/man...tactvty.action

...and review all of your Skymiles activity for a Custom Period, such as all of calendar year 2018.
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Old Feb 2, 2019, 7:48 pm
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Originally Posted by mia
It looks as if you can login here:

https://www.delta.com/acctactvty/man...tactvty.action

...and review all of your Skymiles activity for a Custom Period, such as all of calendar year 2018.
I used that link and searched 01/01/2018 to 12/31/2018. All posted miles were labeled SkyMiles AMEX Cobrand Credit Card Bonus,
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Old Feb 2, 2019, 8:46 pm
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Very good, let us know the outcome. I suppose it is possible that American Express has credited referral points to some other Skymiles account, and somehow cross-linked it to your identity.
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