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Tax Time! Ask me anything about Ride-share Taxes

Launchpad McQuack

Well-Known Member
I am paying about $400 a month in self-employment tax. This comes out to almost $5000 a year! This doesn't seem right. Am I missing something? I only make about $400 a week driving uber. I already pay a lot in service fees. Please help!
Your numbers are screwy. Lets assume that you paid $4,800 for the year in SE tax ($400/month).

Since SE tax is 15.3%, that means that you made at least $31,372 ($4,800 / 0.153) for the year.

Assuming that you drove every single week and made the same amount every week, that means you made $600 per week ($31,372 / 52). If you took any weeks off, then your average for the weeks that you drove should be even higher.

There is absolutely no way that you should be paying $400 per month in SE tax if you are only making $400 per week. In order to pay that much in SE tax, you need to make at least 1.5x that amount.
 

uberbotch

New Member
Does the 1099K from uber include tips and bonuses? Do I have to figure out how much of that is tips manually for the schedule c?
Thanks
 

Older Chauffeur

Well-Known Member
I am paying about $400 a month in self-employment tax. This comes out to almost $5000 a year! This doesn't seem right. Am I missing something? I only make about $400 a week driving uber. I already pay a lot in service fees. Please help!
SECA is 15.3% of net profit, with a threshold of $400 annually. So if you’re netting approximately $31,400 after deducting all fees and mileage, cell phone bill, etc, the SECA would be about $4800. Then you get credit for half of it on your 1040 when you file. But something doesn’t sound right if your deposits total only $20,000. Are you deducting all Uber’s fees from what they show as your gross?

I’m not a tax professional, but I’m sure Bill (@UberTaxPro ) will see your question and help you out. I would imagine he’s probably pretty busy as tax day approaches.
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Does the 1099K from uber include tips and bonuses? Do I have to figure out how much of that is tips manually for the schedule c?
Thanks
I believe bonuses are reported on a 1099misc, with a minimum threshold of $600. I think tips on the app would be reported along with other customer paid earnings on the 1099k. But I’m an amateur, so watch for @UberTaxPro’s answer.
 
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Larry$$$

Active Member
Milage log.what details do I need to log in? I didn't keep a detailed log. I was able to figure out my start and end odometer for 2018. Will Lyft Driving history surfice? It doesn't show picking address or dropoff address. Just time pick up and drop off
 

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UberTaxPro

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Milage log.what details do I need to log in? I didn't keep a detailed log. I was able to figure out my start and end odometer for 2018. Will Lyft Driving history surfice? It doesn't show picking address or dropoff address. Just time pick up and drop off
Lyft history might suffice but it might short change you on business miles. Do your best to re-create an accurate log while things are still fresh in your memory etc...
 

Hornplayer

Member
If your're actively working from your house to first ride yes. By actively working I mean app on seeking rides driving to a ride etc...
Between miles same thing. You need to be keeping a mileage log. I prefer the app TripLog in manual mode to create the log.
Hi UberTaxPro,

Thanx for starting and maintaining this thread (and the rest of you who are contributing). It's a gold mine of useful (and timely) information.

I started Ubering and Lyfting in Jan. 2019, so don't have to worry about tax things due tomorrow for Uber (Apr. 15). Must be nice to see someone NOT asking urgent questions about taxes the day before they're due, eh?

I looked at the TripLog app for about one minute, and downloaded it to my iPhone 6-plus, same phone that does my Uber and Lyft apps. It seems to have a lot more features than I really need. In 30 days I get to decide what feature(s) I want to keep when the free demo period runs out.

Had a quick question for you: I apparetly auto-starts some of its trips. Evidently by waiting till you turn it on or activate it etc., and then waiting until it detects speed of 5mph or more for a few seconds. Does it also know when you turned on your Uber app, when you activated the section that hunts for riders for you, when Uber announces there is a rider, when you accept the rider, and when the rider actually gets in the car? Or are these things mostly things you have to press buttons for, despite the Auto-start?

In other words, can TripLog detect what the Uber app is doing? Like when it announces a ping, when you tell it you have picked up the rider etc.?

Thanks. I'll try to learn more so I don't keep coming up with these raw newbie questions.
 

UberTaxPro

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Hi UberTaxPro,

Thanx for starting and maintaining this thread (and the rest of you who are contributing). It's a gold mine of useful (and timely) information.

I started Ubering and Lyfting in Jan. 2019, so don't have to worry about tax things due tomorrow for Uber (Apr. 15). Must be nice to see someone NOT asking urgent questions about taxes the day before they're due, eh?

I looked at the TripLog app for about one minute, and downloaded it to my iPhone 6-plus, same phone that does my Uber and Lyft apps. It seems to have a lot more features than I really need. In 30 days I get to decide what feature(s) I want to keep when the free demo period runs out.

Had a quick question for you: I apparetly auto-starts some of its trips. Evidently by waiting till you turn it on or activate it etc., and then waiting until it detects speed of 5mph or more for a few seconds. Does it also know when you turned on your Uber app, when you activated the section that hunts for riders for you, when Uber announces there is a rider, when you accept the rider, and when the rider actually gets in the car? Or are these things mostly things you have to press buttons for, despite the Auto-start?

In other words, can TripLog detect what the Uber app is doing? Like when it announces a ping, when you tell it you have picked up the rider etc.?

Thanks. I'll try to learn more so I don't keep coming up with these raw newbie questions.
I not a trip log expert but I don't think it "talks" with any other apps. I recommend using trip log in manual mode instead of auto start. It enables you to create a perfect log. In manual mode you have complete control of when it logs addresses.
 

Hornplayer

Member
Carried some passengers with Triplog running, taking most defaults and starting and stopping each trip manually, I think. Now it appears to have several records of trips, meaning I might have done something right.

My question is, how can I download those to my desktop computer at home? I’m in the 30-day period where I can use all features. Has anyone done this?

Thanks all!
 

stanigu

Member
Would you consider something like Lyft Express rental as a lease and use standard mileage deduction? A buddy of mine is in that situation...
 

Hornplayer

Member
UberTaxPro, in short I start from my home, turn on the Uber app, and put it on line so it's seeking riders. Wait for maybe 15 minutes, and get a ping. I turn on TripLog and manually start a trip (with the accurate odometer reading from my car), and accept the ping. Drive to the rider's place, he gets aboard, we drive to his destination, he gets out, I tell the Uber app that the ride is over, rate the rider, and we live happily ever after. And I manually end the trip in Triplog.

And right then and there, I start a new trip. Then drive about a mile to a nearby shopping center where I often get pings. The Uber app is still on, looking for riders. Sit at the shopping center about 3 minutes, and another ping comes in. I accept the rider, drive to his place, he gets in, we go to the destination, he gets out, all is well. And I terminate the trip in Triplog.

Lather, rinse, repeat. I get a long string of rides like this, sometimes with as much as a twenty-minute wait between the time a rider gets out of the car, and the next ping comes in.

Throughout this entire adventure, the Uber app has been on, and always on line starting from the time at home when I first turned it on, until I drive back home to await another rider, no pings come, and I finally take the Uber app off line (no longer seeking riders), turn off the Uber app and turn off Triplog.

For that entire time, I am seeking riders throughout, or going to the riders pickup spot, or driving him to his dropoff, or driving to a new spot to (hopefully) get more riders. Even when I go home at the end, I'm still seeking new riders until I finally take the Uber app off line at home and quit seeking riders. I never took the Uber app offline until the very end.

My question is, can I consider ALL of that driving (as I presented in the above examples), as business driving, and deduct it on my taxes?
 
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UberTaxPro

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UberTaxPro, in short I start from my home, turn on the Uber app, and put it on line so it's seeking riders. Wait for maybe 15 minutes, and get a ping. I turn on TripLog and manually start a trip (with the accurate odometer reading from my car), and accept the ping. Drive to the rider's place, he gets aboard, we drive to his destination, he gets out, I tell the Uber app that the ride is over, rate the rider, and we live happily ever after. And I manually end the trip in Triplog.

And right then and there, I start a new trip. Then drive about a mile to a nearby shopping center where I often get pings. The Uber app is still on, looking for riders. Sit at the shopping center about 3 minutes, and another ping comes in. I accept the rider, drive to his place, he gets in, we go to the destination, he gets out, all is well. And I terminate the trip in Triplog.

Lather, rinse, repeat. I get a long string of rides like this, sometimes with as much as a twenty-minute wait between the time a rider gets out of the car, and the next ping comes in.

Throughout this entire adventure, the Uber app has been on, and always on line starting from the time at home when I first turned it on, until I drive back home to await another rider, no pings come, and I finally take the Uber app off line (no longer seeking riders), turn off the Uber app and turn off Triplog.

For that entire time, I am seeking riders throughout, or going to the riders pickup spot, or driving him to his dropoff, or driving to a new spot to (hopefully) get more riders. Even when I go home at the end, I'm still seeking new riders until I finally take the Uber app off line at home and quit seeking riders. I never took the Uber app offline until the very end.

My question is, can I consider ALL of that driving (as I presented in the above examples), as business driving, and deduct it on my taxes?
The question is are those miles "necessary and ordinary" for your trade? From what you've stated I'm leaning towards yes. One thing about the trip log, I think you should also stop and start the trip log when you reach the pick up location.
 

Hornplayer

Member
Thanks UberTaxPro. You're helping a great deal, for me to figure out Uber taxes etc.

There seems to be another ridesharing trip logger for your phone, called MileIQ. I know nothing about it, except that I saw it in the App Store. Have you ever used it? Advantages/disadvantages over TripLog? (You mentioned earlier that you use TripLog).
 

UberTaxPro

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Thanks UberTaxPro. You're helping a great deal, for me to figure out Uber taxes etc.

There seems to be another ridesharing trip logger for your phone, called MileIQ. I know nothing about it, except that I saw it in the App Store. Have you ever used it? Advantages/disadvantages over TripLog? (You mentioned earlier that you use TripLog).
Never tried it, does it have manual mode?
 

Launchpad McQuack

Well-Known Member
From what I have been reading from other drivers Uber Eats is very hard to make a taxable profit, meaning your income will be negative after deducting standard mileage rates of 58¢ per mile.
I disagree. I think it is easier to make a taxable profit with Uber Eats. In general, delivery drivers drive less miles than passenger drivers. Our trips are shorter. For a delivery driver, 15 miles is a long trip. The reduced mileage means that our expenses are less (both real expenses and for tax purposes), so we don't have as much deduction to offset our income.

For 2018, I had negative taxable income. That is because I only drove for a month and I had all of my startup costs (cell phone, delivery bags, etc.) included. This year, I won't have those startup costs again (unless I keep dropping my phone and ultimately break it). My only deductible expenses will be my recurring cell phone plan and mileage. I fully expect to have a taxable profit this year.
 

FLKeys

Well-Known Member
I disagree. I think it is easier to make a taxable profit with Uber Eats. In general, delivery drivers drive less miles than passenger drivers. Our trips are shorter. For a delivery driver, 15 miles is a long trip. The reduced mileage means that our expenses are less (both real expenses and for tax purposes), so we don't have as much deduction to offset our income.

For 2018, I had negative taxable income. That is because I only drove for a month and I had all of my startup costs (cell phone, delivery bags, etc.) included. This year, I won't have those startup costs again (unless I keep dropping my phone and ultimately break it). My only deductible expenses will be my recurring cell phone plan and mileage. I fully expect to have a taxable profit this year.
Keep us posted, since we don't have Uber eats here I can only go by what I read. If they start it here I will give it a try and see for my self. Recently had a PAX tell me that he got a message from Uber that Eats was coming to the Keys soon. First I heard it was coning here, we will see.
 

Launchpad McQuack

Well-Known Member
Keep us posted, since we don't have Uber eats here I can only go by what I read. If they start it here I will give it a try and see for my self. Recently had a PAX tell me that he got a message from Uber that Eats was coming to the Keys soon. First I heard it was coning here, we will see.
Do you drive the full length of the Keys? According to Uber's web site, Eats is available in Key West.
 

FLKeys

Well-Known Member
Do you drive the full length of the Keys? According to Uber's web site, Eats is available in Key West.
No I try to stay in the upper keys and if I get a ride into the middle keys I'll hang there. The few times I get rides to Key West I turn on DF and get a ride out. Key West is way over run by ants from Miami, and drivers down there don't have the best reputations with locals and police. I just assume stay clear of that mess.

I just checked Uberesst site and Key West comes up but when you click on it it says Uber Eats is not available in this location.
 

Launchpad McQuack

Well-Known Member
I just checked Uberesst site and Key West comes up but when you click on it it says Uber Eats is not available in this location.
Uber sucks at information. (My general experience is that they suck at most things that they do.) According to Uber's web site, Eats is not available in the area where I drive. The only reason that I know that it is available here is because when they initially partnered with McDonald's, all of the McDonald's in my area used the letterboards on their signs to advertise delivery with Uber Eats. Otherwise, I still would think that it is not available here......because that is what their web site says.

I have found that the best way to find coverage areas is to go to the Uber Eats web site and type in an address for a location where you think it is NOT available. Then it will show you a map with the nearby coverage areas highlighted. For example, if I put in 13 Kahiki Drive, Tavernier (just making up an address), I get a message that Uber Eats is not available at that address and also a map that shows coverage in Key West. (I would post a link, but I don't think it will work.) If I put in 13 Von Phister Street, Key West, on the other hand, I get a list of restaurants that I can order from, indicating that it is available there.
 
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