The Grammy-winning singer, 37, also faces three months of home confinement, after pleading guilty last year.
Hill failed to pay taxes on about $1.8m (£1.2m) of earnings between 2005-07.
In a statement to the judge, Hill said she had intended to pay the taxes but could not after withdrawing from public life and ending her music career to raise her children.
Hill has six children, five of whom she had with Rohan Marley, the son of Bob Marley.
“I am a child of former slaves who had a system imposed on them,” Hill said in court. “I had an economic system imposed on me.”
Hill started her career with Grammy-award winning hip-hop group Fugees alongside Wyclef Jean and Pras Michel.
She released her acclaimed solo debut album, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, in 1998. It won five Grammy awards and sold more than 19 million copies worldwide.