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irs tax auditMarch Forth. March Fourth. Time Marches on. Beware the Ides of March. In this, the month of March, business owners must be aware of the calendar and their tax deadlines. The Internal Revenue Service made us wait until the very end of January before we could file our tax returns electronically. And our tax filing deadline is still April 15th. But there is a little “grace” period for us this week. March 15th is the Ides of March. This year it falls on a Saturday. What’s the big tax deal about March 15th? That is the day corporations, large and small, must file their tax returns or request an extension of time to file before September 15th. March 15th is also the due date for employers to pay their trust fund taxes. Trust fund taxes are those taxes withheld from their employees’ paychecks. Employees trust their employers to send their money to their tax accounts at the IRS. What’s so important about this date being on Saturday? Many businesses are open on Saturdays, but the government is closed. That means we have two extra days to meet the March 15th deadline. IRS is giving us extra days this time. The next time the 15th falls on the weekend is in June. That is another payroll deposit date. It is also the due date for second quarter estimated tax payments. When the 15th is on a weekend or other holiday observed by the federal government, we have until the next business day to meet that day’s obligation. So mark your calendars not for March 15th, but for March 17th. Before you raise too many glasses to Saint Patrick, be sure you get your 1120 returns or extensions filed. Be sure you get your payroll deposits made. If you use the electronic payment service of EFTPS, remember you need to make that payment one day before the due date. EFTPS (Electronic Federal Tax Payment System) allows you to schedule payments whenever you want, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can even schedule a payment as far as 365 days in advance. But remember this: To reach the IRS on time, payments must be scheduled by 8pm ET at least one calendar day before the tax due date. Even individuals can register to receive a pin number¬† that will allow them to pay their individual taxes by EFTPS. Many people who owe tax to the IRS pay by¬† check. Did you know you can have the IRS debit the amount you owe directly from your bank account? It’s like direct deposit in reverse. And you choose the day you want this debit to happen. Taxes can also be paid by credit card. Understand that the IRS does not pay the merchant fee that most other businesses who accept credit card payments do. The taxpayer pays what is called a convenience fee. If you choose to pay your taxes by credit card (maybe you get airline miles or some other benefit) you will know how much the convenience fee is before you actually pull the trigger on your credit card payment.
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