I got the joining bonus for the bank account and the referral bonus for a credit card. I didn't get any 1099 document from bank and credit card company. So I am trying to write these incomes on line 21 of Schedule 1(Form 1040).

(line 21) Other income. List type and amount

What is the type of these incomes? Should I split the joining bonus and the referral bonus?


1 Answer 1


A joining bonus for a bank generally is reported as interest. You should have received a 1099-INT for it. It should be reported on line 2b (whether or not you received 1099-INT).

A referral bonus for a credit card is generally considered a rebate of amounts spent using the card and is not taxable. However, that rule probably only applies if the bonus is contingent on a certain level of spending on the card. Otherwise, it also should be reported as interest. If the bonus is in points (or miles), it probably isn't taxable until the points are redeemed for something of value. (Points themselves have no cash value.) https://www.investopedia.com/ask/answers/110614/are-credit-card-rewards-considered-taxable-income-irs.asp

  • The referral bonus is given by not spending money, but referring a credit card to my friend. So I think it is taxable income.
    – dolgom
    Apr 8, 2019 at 16:27
  • And as you said, it is written in a bank website that joining bonus is interest. Thanks.
    – dolgom
    Apr 8, 2019 at 16:37

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