Independent Contractor Compliance Blog

New Year, New Taxes

Happy New Year!  With the parties, parades and college football games largely behind us, it’s sobering to think that there are reports and taxes coming due. Following are a few that you should keep an eye on…

On a personal level, you or your accountant will be preparing a Form 1040, U.S. Individual Income Tax Return, which is normally due by April 15th (unless you request an extension).

At the same time, businesses have a few other taxes to consider, such as:

Form 940 Employer’s Annual Federal Tax Return: This form is required to report (and pay) your annual Federal Unemployment Tax Act (FUTA) taxes, in conjunction with state unemployment (UI) taxes. The FUTA tax applies to the first $7,000 you pay to each employee during a calendar year. The good news is you get a credit for amounts you pay to a state against your (federal) FUTA tax. Businesses that did not pay their state unemployment taxes timely will pay the full 6% federal UI taxes on the Form 940.

There are also credit reduction states for 2012. If your business is in one of the states where this applies, the credit will be reduced.You should check with your accountant to determine if you are in a state subject to this credit reduction. The due date for the Form 940 is January 31, 2013. However, if you deposited all your FUTA taxes timely, you have until February 11, 2013.

Form 941 Employer’s Quarterly Federal Tax Return:  You should have been filing the 941 every quarter to report and pay the employer’s share of Social Security Medicare tax. The due date for the 2012 fourth quarter Form 941 is January 31, 2013. If you must remit money with the form a 941 V will also be required.

Form 1099 MISC (Miscellaneous Income):  If you are a business and paid an independent contractor $600 or more during 2012 then you must report the payments made to them on the Form 1099 MISC. The due date to provide your ICs with their 1099s for the IRS is February 14, 2013. You must file copies with the IRS by February 28, 2013, unless you are filing electronically, when the due date is April 1, 2013. Each state has slightly different requirements and due dates, so you should have your accountant verify your state requirements.

Form W-2 and W3:  You must provide every employee with a W-2 by January 31, 2013, so they can report wages earned and pay their share of taxes. The Form W-3 is your transmittal form. Forms W-2 and W3s must be filed by February 28, 2013, unless you are filing electronically when the due date is April 1, 2013.

TIP:  You can also request an extension for an additional 30 days to file with the IRS; however, you are still required to furnish Form W-2 to your employees by January 31, 2013. There are other reports, with different due dates, required by each state. I recommend you check with your accountant for those details.

Disclaimer: Given the general nature and context of this article, the material presented should not be relied upon or construed as either tax or legal advice. For specific information on recent developments, the effects of particular factual situations or of a particular law in regards to your business, or before making decisions based upon this presentation, you should obtain the opinion of a qualified expert.

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