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Frequently Asked Questions About Estimated Taxes

Quarterly Estimated Tax Payments can be a nightmare for business owners to determine how much they owe the IRS. Here is our guide for Frequently Asked Questions regarding Estimated Taxes.

What are Estimated Taxes?

Estimated Taxes are taxes that are paid to the IRS throughout the year on earnings that are not withheld from the federal government. Most people pay these taxes on a quarterly basis.

Who pays estimated taxes?

Unlike individual workers who receive a traditional paycheck from their employer, business owners and 1099 workers are required to pay estimated taxes.

You can also be eligible to pay estimated taxes for income you have earned on the side through investments such as realized capital gains or dividends.

Sometimes, W-2 workers can end up not withholding enough to cover their taxes and need to pay estimated tax payments as well.

What are the Tax Payment Dates for 2024?

  • If you earned income from Jan. 1 - Mar 31, 2024, your estimated payment deadline is April 15, 2024.
  • If you earned income from April 1 - May 31, 2024, your estimated payment deadline is June 17, 2024.
  • If you earned income from June 1 - Aug 31, 2024, your estimated payment deadline is September 16, 2024.
  • If you earned income from Sept. 1 - Dec 31, 2024, your estimated payment deadline is Jan. 15, 2025.

How much do I need to earn to be eligible for estimated payments?

  • Workers that have not withheld enough: You will owe at least $1000 in federal income taxes
  • Self-employed individuals: If you expect to owe more than $1,000 from your gigs, you should pay quarterly estimated taxes as there is no tax being withheld on your income.
  • Businesses: You should make estimated tax payments if you expect to owe $500 or more for the entire tax year.

How do I figure out how much I owe?

There is a reason they are called estimated taxes unfortunately. You need to estimate your projected annual income to determine your tax bill. You can use data from your previous year to help you figure out how much to send. For example, if you think you will owe $12,000 at the end of the year, you should send $3,000 quarterly. This works best if you have a stable income.

If your income varies, you can estimate how much you owe by your previous quarter. The IRS has plenty of resources to help business owners.

Can I pay more often than quarterly?

Yes, similar to paying off a credit card expense, you can pay as soon as you want, and not just on the listed deadlines. It is a good idea to pay more frequently if you are nervous about underpaying.

What happens if I underestimate my tax payment?

If you underpay your estimated tax payment, you will receive a penalty from the IRS. This penalty is determined by how much you underpaid at the deadline plus the interest rate the IRS will apply to how much you still owe. Paying quarterly helps to prevent this.

What happens if I overpay my tax estimate?

You will receive an overpayment credit of the refund that you can either receive or ask the IRS to use as an advanced payment towards next year’s taxes.

Many individuals find it difficult to manage their estimated taxes because they are scared of messing up. Having a better understanding of how they function makes it easier to process your payments each year. For more information, call our business today!