You've been a Doordash delivery driver for a bit, you've received your direct deposits up until now. But where are the Doordash pay stubs? How do you get your paystubs for employment verification with Doordash?
I have some bad news for you. You can't. Doordash doesn't provide any of that because ultimately, Doordash drivers are not Doordash employees.
This doesn't mean you're out of luck. You don't necessarily need paystubs or employment verification. You just need to understand what you do need as an independent contractor, and as a business owner. It might take a little bit of a mindset shift. We'll talk about all that, including:
- How business records replace paystubs, Doordash earnings statements and employee income verifications
- Five steps to create your own income and self employment verification
- Frequently asked questions about Doordash pay stubs and earnings statements.
How business records replace paystubs, Doordash earnings statements, and employee verification.
Technically, as an independent contractor, you're a business owner. That's true of all Doordash delivery partners in the United States. You have to look at your income verification (and just plain income as a whole) differently.
This means Doordash is neither your employer or your boss. They're actually your customer. You are a small business operator, taking out delivery orders for Doordash as a business, and not as an employee.
For that reason, you will never get employment verification from Doordash Inc. or any other food delivery app. There are no payment stubs or W4's or anything of that nature.
This is going to require a mindset change.
It means you'll have to start thinking like a business owner.
Whether you feel like a business owner is irrelevant. An independent contractor for Door dash or any other gig economy delivery apps is technically a business owner. Your independent contractor agreement says you are, as does the IRS.
Here's what this means: You do not tell whoever needs documentation (whether a bank, mortgage lender, property manager, prospective employer, whoever) that you are a Doordash employee. After all, you aren't.
Telling them you're an employee creates an expectation for employment verification, paystubs, all of that from Doordash. Now you've created a situation where you can't give them what they're asking for. Because in the end, you're not an employee.
What you have to do is tell them you're self-employed. Explain that you are in business for yourself.
That doesn't mean they don't want verification. In fact they probably will want more. However, if you know what to provide, you're in a good position to do that.
You have to create your own documentation with business records.
Since you're self-employed, it's all up to you.
Thus, you need to be prepared to provide the business records they need.
It might mean that some folks won't work with you. In my opinion, you probably dodged a bullet. This is an age where more and more are self-employed, either through the gig economy or other entrepreneurial or freelance opportunities. If the people requiring verification aren't with the times you may be better off not working with them.
You no longer have a paycheck. Now you have profit. You no longer have an employer. Now you have customers.
When you competently approach your financial situations as a business owner, with a business mindset, and providing actual business records, you'll be able to provide the information they need.
Your business records, especially your profit and loss statement, allow you to create your own Pay stub and income verification from your Doordash app (and possibly other third party delivery app) deliveries.
Seven steps to create your own income and self employment verification
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Here's the thing. If you go in with the idea that you're sort of employed but not employed, and then don't have any good records, you're shooting yourself in the foot. Shoving your earnings page off your Dasher app in their face is not going to satisfy them.
Let's be real: approaching any of this as a business owner puts you at a disadvantage. Most folks that want your pay stubs or earnings statements expect to see that you're really making money. Many businesses are NOT making money.
The truth is, most folks trust a paystub more than they trust someone's business. If you want to use your business income the best way to approach it is to come at this professionally and with good information. Here are some things that I would tell you.
You'll find a summary of the steps for creating your own business records in the card below. Then you can scroll down for more detail.
- A business mindset
- A bank account for your business income and expenses
- An easy to use book keeping program
- Start thinking like a business owner. Understand here that you are not an employee but you are operating a business. Doordash is no longer your employer but your customer. The money you get from Doordash is not your income, it's your business's income. Start thinking in terms of profit and loss and start treating your business like a business.
- Open a bank account for your delivery business. If you're going to tell a lender, property manager or prospective employer that you're running a business, they want to see that you're treating it like a business. Have your Doordasy earnings direct deposited into your business bank account, pay expenses out of that account, and give yourself a paycheck out of what's left over.
- Get a bookkeeping program. Find an easy to use program that will track all of your income and expenses. Find something that will let you run business reports.
- Keep your business records up to date. When you receive money for your delivery work, record that income in your bookkeeping software. When you have expenses, record those as well. Recording it as it happens is a lot easier than waiting til the end of the year and trying to figure it out.
- Start tracking your actual car expenses as well as your miles. We all know that you need to track your miles. However, when you're presenting business reports it's important to be able to show your actual expenses (and thus your actual profits) as well.
- Run your business reports. Remember, when you're presenting information to lenders or property managers, they want to know what you really made. If you tell them that you are self employed, you're running a business, AND you have a profit and loss report that is up to date. that's going to go a long way towards satisfying their requirements.
- Keep documents backing up your business income. Anyone can make up numbers on a program like Hurdlr. You still need to show folks that the numbers you are showing them are based on reality. Bank records from your business bank account showing deposits, tax forms and 1099's from previous years are all things that will show that your income was real.
None of these are a guarantee. There are two big road blocks you may face.
1. Some folks aren't very flexible. They want the easy that comes with paystubs. They don't want to do the work of looking through business records. You're better off without them.
2. You may not qualify. You could find out your actual income wasn't what you thought it was, because you were thinking of money in, rather than profit. Sometimes that's a wake up call that you either need to step up your game or move on to something else.
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1. Think like a business owner
The first step is to quit looking at your direct deposits from Doordash or anyone else as a paycheck. The best thing you can do is start thinking of it as your BUSINESS's income, not yours.
Understand that income for your business is the profit, not the money coming in. Your real income as a business owner is the money that is left over after expenses.
If all you walk in with is a list of the deposits you received from Doordash, you probably aren't going to get whatever it is you want. That's because the people you're dealing with understand that businesses have expenses. Often a LOT of them. Money in isn't enough.
From now on, you need to be thinking like a business owner. You're not seeing the delivery fees and the customer tip amount from Doordash orders as your income. Instead, it's what's left over after expenses that's your income. When you do that, you also begin thinking about how to keep those expenses down.
2. Open a bank account for your delivery business
Okay, so you walk in and tell people you're self-employed. You say you don't have a Paystub, you're not a Doordash employee, but you're running a business and you have income from that business.
They're impressed. Until you provide your documentation. Your bank records for your business are all mixed in with your personal bank records.
It's not a good look.
If you want them to take you seriously as a business owner, you need to treat this like a business. One of the best practices for that (if not THE best) is to have a bank account for your business.
Get your direct deposit from Doordash (and any others) sent to your business account. Pay your business expenses from that account. Do NOT use the account for personal expenses. Keep personal and business separate. This also means doing away with fast pay. The idea here is to not treat your business income as spendable money until you've taken care of the business side of things.
Giving yourself a paycheck from your business bank account.
These things are not necessary for income verification purposes. However, they are things that can go a long way to 1) expanding your business mindset, and 2) helping others take you seriously as a business.
- All of my earnings from my Doordash account, Grubhub, Uber Eats and some of the smaller apps are deposited into my business account.
- Each week, I figure out how much to save for taxes, and move that money into a tax savings account.
- I created a second savings account for paid time off. I calculate a percent of my profits and set that aside, so that if I want to take a long time off, I can still pay myself for how much time I want off from my PTO account.
- There's one more savings account: for business expenses. Every week I put 30 cents for every mile I drove into that account. When I buy gas or get car maintenance, I pay for it out of that account.
- After taking money out for taxes, paid time off, and expenses, I do an ACH transfer of the rest over to my personal checking account. That's when I'm giving myself a paycheck.
How do you find a good bank account for your delivery business?
There are a lot of options available.
My credit union allowed me to create a second checking account and let me create multiple savings accounts, or buckets. That worked very well for me until I ended up creating an EIN for my business.
If you prefer local banking, you can call around and find out if any will give you a free business account. Get something with debit card access that doesn't hit you with minimum balance fees or anything like that.
Personally, I eventually started an account with Novo. They're what you call a fintech bank, where it's more of an online bank than your typical brick and mortar financial institution. I like them because they have no fees, no minimums, they're easy to use, and they let me create multiple reserves. There I can keep my paid time off, tax and expense accounts and very easily move them back and forth.
You can use my referral link to start an account. Full disclosure: I may receive referral fees. That said, there are a lot of options out there for business banks. The main thing is, get an account where you can keep your business and personal spending separate.
3. Get a good bookkeeping program
You don't need something complicated. But you should have some form of bookkeeping for your business. There are some great low cost or even free options available.
Here's what I would tell you to look for:
- Find something easy to use.
- Get something you can access from your phone or your computer.
- A program with GPS tracking is preferable – which allows you to incorporate your mileage expenses into reports.
- Find something that will create business reports for you. In particular, something that can let you create a profit and loss report.
Personally, I found Hurdlr to be the best option. It's easy to use, it's flexible, and it lets me track things that some apps like Stride won't let you track. The free version is the best free tracker on the market in my opinion. The subscription version has some automation features that make it quite powerful.
Here are some articles and reviews on some bookkeeping apps that are out there:
- My review of Hurdlr
- A comparison of several mileage and expense tracking apps
- A review of GoDaddy Bookkeeping
- A review of Quickbooks Self Employed
4. Keep your records up to date
Now that you have something to record your expenses, start recording.
Every time you get paid, put an entry into your program. With every expense, record it.
Here's where it's a big deal to have a bank account just for your business. If all of your business transactions are through your business account, this makes things sooooooooooo much easier. Some programs like the Hurdlr subscription version will automatically link to your bank, and all you have to do is tell the program what your expenses were for.
You would be surprised how valuable it can be to have up to date business records. Here are some different ways those records can bail you out:
- Every year, at least one food delivery service like Doordash, Grubhub, Instacart and others screw up the 1099's. They get them wrong or don't even send one out. If you have good records, you can just pull up your program, run a report, and you know what you made.
- With the latest rounds of the PPP and the EIDL, there were some income requirements based on 8-week periods or quarterly income. If you already had your income and expenses entered into your bookkeeping program, you could pull those reports easily.
But the main thing here, for the point of this article, is that actually doing bookkeeping is one of the best ways to be taken seriously if your business income is needed for some form of verification.
If you want to learn more about bookkeeping for your delivery business, you can read about seven rules for easier bookkeeping for your Doordash business.
5. Start tracking all your car expenses
Everyone tells you to track your miles. You should.
But don't just track miles. Keep track of your actual expenses as well. No, you cannot claim them on top of your miles. That's not the reason.
The reality for those of us who drive a lot for our business is that we really have two profits. There's the taxable profit and the real world profit. Most of us are paying well less than the IRS allowed 56¢ per mile (2021) to use our cars. Claiming the additional mileage amount is great for taxes, but smaller profits aren't so great when trying to use business records as a replacement for a Doordash paystub or income verification.
But here's the thing. If you're trying to qualify for something based on your income from your business, you're going to be taken more seriously when you actually understand both your real-world profit and your taxable profit.
This is why I stress getting a bookkeeping program that will let you do that. Some programs like Stride Tax don't let you track that because they assume you'll just claim miles.
The thing is, if your taxable income is low because of the mileage allowance, when you can say this is what it ACTUALLY cost to use your car, you have a better chance of overcoming those concerns.
6. Run your business reports
Generally the report is a profit and loss statement.
The profit and loss statement tells whoever's evaluating it how much income you had coming in. It also breaks down the kind of expenses you had. In the end, it will tell you your profit (if you made more than your expenses) or your loss (if your expenses were greater than your total earnings).
That printed out P&L is ultimately your Doordash pay stub. This is the thing that lets them what you actually made.
If you've filed taxes in the past for your self-employment income, that Profit and Loss might sound familiar. Schedule C is called Profit and Loss from Business. We think of it as tax deductions but they're really business expenses. Schedule C is really your tax version of a W2 for a given calendar year, in that it provides the one number that says how much you earned, and that number is added to your other taxable income for income tax purposes.
7. Keep documents of your business income.
When you walk in and say I made this much money and hand over your Profit and Loss statement, that's probably not quite enough to satisfy them. Anyone can download Hurdlr and make up some numbers.
Now you have to back it up.
How do you do that?
Doordash is pretty useless for these purposes. In fact you see a bit of their true colors.
In their Dasher support there's a section where they tell you to open a case and request documentation. It leaves the impression they'll do something for you.
Don't count on it.
I've tried it out. I know several others. We keep getting the same reply: You can get your earnings history from the earnings tab in your app.
There are some problems with that. There's no option to print that out. Bigger than that, earnings records in the app only go back a few months.
And as I mentioned earlier, you can't exactly shove your Dasher app in the face of the loan officer or manager and say here you go!
It's really too bad Door dash is as bad as they are. Grubhub sends an email with every transaction. Uber Eats lets you log in and download a detailed payment history.
And Doordash lets you take a screen shot of a few months worth of income.
So how do you document what you earned.
Bank records and tax records.
For last year and before, you can use your 1099 forms. It's also a good practice to have a copy of your Schedule C and tax forms. All of that establishes that you really were in business.
And then there's the bank statements. This is another reason to get a separate bank account. If you walk in with pages of personal expenses mixed in with your business expenses, there's a higher risk they won't take you seriously as a business owner. If they have to wade through all of that, there's a good chance they'll be showing you the door.
And do you really want to show off all your personal expenditures to them?
Printing out your business account bank records gives proof of the payments you received, especially in the current year. It also isn't cluttered up by non-business items.
Frequently asked questions about Doordash pay stubs and earnings statements.
That's it in a nutshell. That's how you come up with your Doordash Pay Stubs: you do it yourself. Do it in the form of business records.
Some of these questions below may have been answered in whole or in part. Forgive me if I repeat myself on any of that, but I wanted to answer them here in case you happened to just skip down to these questions.
No. You are not an employee, so there is no paystub. In fact Doordash doesn't provide any form of printable earnings record. The Doordash support center lets you request an earnings history. However, Doordash customer support typically comes back and says you can just get it off the earnings tab in your Doordash driver app.
No. A Doordash W2 is only for Doordash employees. Dashers are independent contractors. You would instead receive a 1099-NEC at the end of the year if your earnings were more than $600.
You can't. There is no proof of employment because you are not an employee. You contract with Doordash as a business. With that in mind, you would need to instead provide proof of business income.
A separate bank account is not a requirement, but it is a really good idea. It is best to keep your business and personal finances separate. If you are applying for anything that requires proof of income, and your income is from a business (as is the case when you're paid for independent contractor work) a dedicated business account will get you taken much more seriously.
You should do all this any time you want to include your Doordash income in anything that would require paystubs or verification. Whether you do your business as though it's like a full time job or it's just part time, it's still considered a business.