Dividends paid to you out of a corporation’s earnings and profits are taxable as ordinary income. The corporation will report dividends on Form 1099-DIV (or equivalent statement). Mutual-fund dividends and distributions are also reported on Form 1099-DIV (or similar form). Corporate dividends and mutual-fund distributions of $10 or more are reported on Form 1099-DIV (or equivalent) whether you receive them in cash or they have been reinvested at your request.
Form 1099-DIV for 2012 gives you a breakdown of the dividends and distributions paid to you during the year. A mutual-fund or real estate investment trust (REIT) dividend paid to you in January 2013 will also be reported to you on the 2012 Form 1099-DIV if it was declared and was payable in October, November, or December of 2012. The company or fund may send a statement that is similar to Form 1099-DIV. You do not have to attach the Form 1099-DIV (or similar statement) to your tax return.
Box 1a. Ordinary dividends taxed to you are shown in Box 1. These are the most common type of distribution, payable out of a corporation’s earnings and profits. Your share of a mutual fund’s ordinary dividends is also shown on Form 1099-DIV; short-term capital gain distributions are included in the Box 1a total.
Box 1b. Part of the Box 1a amount may be qualified dividends. Qualified dividends reported in Box 1b are generally taxed at the same favorable rates (zero or 15%) ...