Senate Sends Repeal of Healthcare Law’s 1099 Tax Provision to Obama

In an 87-12 vote, the Senate has passed a repeal of the new IRS 1099 tax reporting provision contained in the major federal healthcare reform law.

The bill — H.R.4, the Small Business Paperwork Mandate Elimination Act of 2011 — has already been approved by the House. It now goes to President Barack Obama, who has indicated he will sign it.

Under last year’s Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, starting in 2012 any business expense of more than $600 would require the filing of a separate 1099 form with the Internal Revenue Service. Current law requires a filing for those expenses paid to an unincorporated entity, but the new requirement would have required filings for expenses such as phone or Internet service and office supplies. The provision was included in the healthcare law as a way to catch vendors who might be evading taxes, but businesses balked at the extra paperwork and tax preparation burden.

Democrats and Republicans agreed to repeal the provision but they took months to do it as they disagreed over how to offset the loss of revenue as a result of eliminating the IRS requirement.