Tax season is in full swing and the workload at CPA offices is on the rise as the big day on the tax calendar looms closer. But for small business owners, tax prep and meeting deadlines is a year-round endeavor.
We’ll walk through the most important business tax deadlines and separate them into 2 categories: the “one-offs” that you do once a year, and those pesky items that keep recurring on a monthly or quarterly basis.
By February 1st, the W-2 and 1099 forms for all your employees and contractors need to be in the mail. February 1 is also a deadline for 1099-B forms that deal with the sales of stock, bonds or mutual funds in a brokerage account.
While your business is probably not the one responsible for mailing those out, there’s a good chance you might be on the receiving end of either the 1099-B or a 1099-S that covers real estate transactions.
Those same W-2 and 1099 forms you sent to your employees a month ago must be submitted to the IRS by this date.
If you’re an LLC, an S Corp, C Corp or other kind of corporation, March 15th is the deadline to get your corporate tax return filed. Note that you can request an extension on this and push the deadline out to as late as September 15th.
April 15 May 17 (extended by the IRS)
How do you handle paying yourself?
If your business structure pays you as an individual, you still have a normal 1040 return to file like everyone else. Regardless of your structure, if you do estimated tax payments to spread out your financial burden, the first quarterly payment is due on this date.
The recurring tax deadlines
Estimated tax payments
Estimated tax payments one of the deadlines that occur throughout the year. You can look forward to doing this again on June 15, September 15 and January 15 of the following year.
The IRS Form 941 is where you can report the withholding you do for your W-2 employees for their FICA and other payroll taxes. April 30 is the first of the 4 annual deadlines here to be followed by July 30, October 29 and then January 31 of the following year.
Do you own a restaurant, a bar or any other business where your employees derive a substantial portion of their income from tips? If so, the IRS wants that reported to them. The 10th of every month is when your employees should report their tip income to you.
This is another industry-specific tax that may not apply to you. But if you’re in manufacturing, retail or trucking, you’ll owe excise taxes. Each state has different requirements for how often they should be paid. Quarterly due dates are April 30, July 30, October 29 and then the following January 31.
Running your business is hard and tax deadlines don’t make it easier. Filing your taxes on time can be a challenge, both in terms of actual cost and the time it takes to get everything together. You can manage that cost more efficiently by preparing well in advance with these deadlines.