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Working full-time and occasional Freelance, do I "own business" on CSS?

sanielsaniel 8 replies2 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 10 New Member
Hi everyone,

I am getting prepared for CSS and FAFSA for my Junior son and I have a question on Business ownership question.

Currently, I am working full time for a company as an art director and I had a chance to do a freelance project in 2017. I filed my tax with 1099MISC and write off some expenses( like computers and so on). and filed schedule C. In 2018 project was canceled and I received $500 in cash for a small task but no 1099 but filed schedule C for losses.

Do I answer that I own a business?
How to answer for the value of the business? That was one-time income in 2017 and $500 cash in 2018...

Can anyone share your thoughts on this?

Thanks in advance.
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Replies to: Working full-time and occasional Freelance, do I "own business" on CSS?

  • Erin's DadErin's Dad 32863 replies3607 discussionsSuper Moderator Posts: 36,470 Super Moderator
    IMO you do own a business but the value would be minimal. Here is some explanatory info that is on the UVA website which may help.
    https://sfs.virginia.edu/sites/sfs.virginia.edu/files/2019-20 CSS Profile Comprehensive Question and Instruction Listing.pdf

    I know there will be more savvy people chiming in shortly.
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  • politepersonpoliteperson 256 replies4 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 260 Junior Member
    Yes, if you file a schedule C most FA offices consider that business income (which it is, after all). Mainly they want to see the expenses you’re claiming. Business value for what you’re describing would probably be 0, especially if you’re not doing this when you file the form (if you have a separate business bank account or equipment or inventory, then you can include those amounts).
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  • kelsmomkelsmom 15411 replies98 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 15,509 Senior Member
    I think you are asking if you need to report a value for the business. I am guessing no. This explains which businesses can be excluded from reporting the value on the FAFSA:
    Family-owned and controlled small businesses (which can include farms) that have 100 or fewer full-time or full-time equivalent employees. “Family-owned and controlled” means that more than 50% of the business is owned by persons who are directly related or are or were related by marriage. (Family members do not have to be counted in the household size for this question.)

    You DO have to report any income earned from the business, of course.
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  • sanielsaniel 8 replies2 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 10 New Member
    One more Question: we are applying CSS and FAFSA this Oct. Do I need a tax return of just 2018? or 2017 also?
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  • Twoin18Twoin18 1387 replies16 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,403 Senior Member
    I don't think you answer yes if there wasn't a business in 2019, just income in 2018. This question is part of the assets section, to be completed as of the current date, not looking back to the prior year.
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