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Publication 531

Allocated Tips(p6)

If your employer allocated tips to you, they are shown separately in box 8 of your Form W-2. They are not included in box 1 with your wages and reported tips. If box 8 is blank, this discussion does not apply to you.

What are allocated tips.(p6)

These are tips that your employer assigned to you in addition to the tips you reported to your employer for the year. Your employer will have done this only if: No income, social security, or Medicare taxes are withheld on allocated tips.

How were your allocated tips figured.(p6)

The tips allocated to you are your share of an amount figured by subtracting the reported tips of all employees from 8% (or an approved lower rate) of food and drink sales (other than carryout sales and sales with a service charge of 10% or more). Your share of that amount was figured using either a method provided by an employer-employee agreement or a method provided by IRS regulations based on employees' sales or hours worked. For information about the exact allocation method used, ask your employer.

Must you report your allocated tips on your tax return.(p6)

You must report tips you received in 2012 (including both cash and noncash tips) on your tax return as explained in What tips to report, earlier. Any tips you reported to your employer in 2012 as required (explained under Reporting Tips to Your Employer, earlier) are included in the wages shown in box 1 of your Form W-2. Add to the amount in box 1 only the tips you did not report to your employer as required. This should include any allocated tips shown in box 8 on your Form(s) W-2, unless you have adequate records to show that you received less tips in the year than the allocated amount.
See What tips to report under Reporting Tips on Your Tax Return, and Keeping a Daily Tip Record, earlier.

How to report allocated tips.(p6)

If you received any tips in 2012 that you did not report to your employer as required (including allocated tips that you are required to report on your tax return), add these tips to the amount in box 1 of your Form(s) W-2 and report this amount as wages on Form 1040, line 7; Form 1040NR, line 8; or Form 1040NR-EZ, line 3. (You cannot file Form 1040A or Form 1040EZ).
Because social security and Medicare taxes were not withheld from the allocated tips, you must report those taxes as additional tax on your return. Complete Form 4137 and include the allocated tips on line 1 of the form as provided in its instructions. See Reporting social security and Medicare taxes on tips not reported to your employer under Reporting Tips on Your Tax Return, earlier.

How to request an approved lower rate.(p6)

Your employer can use a tip rate lower than 8% (but not lower than 2%) to figure allocated tips only if the IRS approves the lower rate. Either the employer or the employees can request approval of a lower rate by filing a petition with the IRS. The petition must include specific information about the establishment that will justify the lower rate. A user fee must be paid with the petition.
An employee petition can be filed only with the consent of a majority of the directly tipped employees (waiters, bartenders, and others who receive tips directly from customers). The petition must state the total number of directly tipped employees and the number of employees consenting to the petition. Employees filing the petition must promptly notify the employer, and the employer must promptly give the IRS a copy of all Forms 8027, Employer's Annual Information Return of Tip Income and Allocated Tips, filed for the establishment for the previous 3 years.
For more information about how to file a petition and what information to include, see Allocation of Tips in the Instructions for Form 8027.