[Disclaimer: I am not an accountant nor am I qualified to provide tax advice. You should seek professional advice before taking action on any of the ideas presented here.]
For new investors in LendingClub or Prosper, it’s important to understand the documents you receive come tax time. For existing investors it’s important to be aware of any changes LendingClub and Prosper have made in their documents or the way the information is reported. Over time the documents have evolved, with both companies now providing a tax guide for their investors.
Note that investors who invest through a retirement account do not have to worry about tax reporting. Here at Lend Academy we believe there is a strong case for investing in marketplace lending through a product like an IRA. Here is our 2018 post on that topic if you’re interested in learning more about taxes and marketplace lending.
As you’re looking at the documents provided by LendingClub and Prosper you should understand at a basic level how profits and losses are reported. The interest or income from loan payments is taxed as ordinary income. Losses are either short or long term capital losses. Copied below is how LendingClub summarizes the tax treatment of investing in loans on the platform:
Generally, gains and losses from recoveries, sales or charge-offs related to LendingClub Notes are reported for tax purposes as capital gains or losses, rather than ordinary gains or losses. Generally, LendingClub Notes are considered capital assets because they are owned for the purposes of investment (similar to a stock or a bond). Generally, realized capital losses are first offset against realized capital gains. For individuals, any excess capital losses can be deducted against ordinary income up to $3,000 ($1,500 if married filing separately). Capital losses in excess of this limit may be carried forward to later years to reduce capital gains or ordinary income until the capital losses are fully utilized.
Now that you have some background on the tax treatment, we can move into the details on how profits and losses get reported at LendingClub and Prosper.
Filing Taxes for a LendingClub Account
Note: If you plan to use TurboTax to file your taxes, LendingClub has a step-by-step guide on importing your forms here.
First you’ll want to navigate to “Statements” after logging into your LendingClub account. This can be done by clicking your name in the top right of the landing page once you login. On the next screen you will see a menu bar item titled “Tax Forms”. Clicking on the link will take you to another page which will include a link to your 2017 – 1099 Consolidated Package. Linked below your tax document you’ll find LendingClub’s provided 2017 Tax Form Guide. The guide does a great job of outlining which forms you will receive and where you should report this information when filing your taxes. The below table taken from the tax guide shares which forms you will receive. [Read more…]