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Essential Small Business Filing Forms

October 21, 2010

As a small business owner, you have an obligation to stay compliant with the IRS and file your taxes on time. There are various tax filing forms associated with small business tax filing, and it’s important to know them all so you can file your taxes when you’re required to do so.

Below is the list of essential tax forms you need to have in order to file your taxes for your business and for your employees:

  • W-4 Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate: Any new hire you have has to fill this out. They have to let you know what their filing status is and how many exemptions they can claim. This form is critical because it determines how much in taxes you take out of their check.
  • W-5 Earned Income Credit Advance Payment Certificate: If you have employees who are eligible for the Earned Income Credit can get part of their credit payment in advance when they fill out this form.
  • W-2 Wage and Tax Statement: This is the tax form an employee receives at the end of the year showing their earnings as well as how much was taken out of their salary for taxes. As an employer you are responsible for making sure the W-2 is correct and the proper amount of taxes were taken out.
  • 940 Employer’s Annual Federal Unemployment Tax Return: This is the form you need to fill out to show how much you paid out in unemployment.
  • 941 Employer’s Quarterly Federal Tax Return: You have to file a 941 payroll tax every quarter, no exceptions. This form shows how much you paid your employees for the quarter and how much was withheld for taxes. You have to pay the IRS the withheld amount.
  • 1099-MISC Miscellaneous: This is your income minus any applicable deductions. You also report any contractors you hired on this form as they’re not regular employees.

Stay Prepared: Make sure you have copies of all these forms for both your employees and yourself. Keeping your tax filings organized and readily available will help prevent tax filing mistakes and missed deadlines. If you need additional help staying compliant, the IRS has a free calendar with all of the tax filing deadlines marked available to download from their website.

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