Form 941 Instructions

By George Lawrence
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Federal tax Form 941 is also called the Employer's Quarterly Federal Tax Return. Small business owners typically use this form to report income tax withheld from wages, tips, Social Security and Medicare. As the form's title indicates, you must file it quarterly. Failure to file Form 941 could result in penalties and interest assessed against the small business owner.

Determine Whether You Must File

Employers must use Form 941 to report the following items: wages paid, tips received by employees, income taxes withheld, the employer's share of Medicare and Social Security taxes, employees' share of Medicare and Social Security taxes, quarterly adjustments to Medicare and Social Security taxes due to fractions of cents or sick pay, any advanced earned income tax credit, and credit for COBRA premium assistance payments.

Most employers must file this form, with a few exceptions. Seasonal employers need not file the form during quarters in which no work was performed by employees. Employers of household employees or farm employees also need not file Form 941.

Fill in the Blanks

If you have to file this form, download a copy, print it out and fill in the appropriate blanks. The top section requires you to write down your Employer Identification Number, your name, the name of your business and your business address. You must also check the appropriate box to indicate for which quarter you're filing the form (winter, spring, summer or fall).

Part 1 of the form asks you to input information about the current quarter. Work through each line of the form and input the appropriate dollar amount on the appropriate line. Add and subtract where the instructions indicate for you to do so. If you have trouble recording the proper amounts, work with a certified public accountant to ensure that you input the correct information.

Part 2 asks you to input information about your tax liability during each of the three months of the quarter. Include the state where you make tax payment deposits. Also include the amounts on the appropriate lines unless the amount of line 10 is less than $2,500. If the amount on line 10 is less than $2,500, skip Part 2 and continue to Part 3.

Part 3 seeks information about your business. Answer the applicable questions. If a question doesn't apply, leave it blank.

Part 4 requires you to make a choice as to whether the IRS can share the information on your return with a third party. Fill out Part 4 if you want to make this authorization.

Part 5, requires your signature. Sign and date the return.

Once you've filled out the form, fill in the payment voucher. Enter your Employee Identification Number, check the appropriate box to indicate the quarter for which you're filing, then enter the payment amount and your address. Once you've filled this out properly, detach the voucher from the form by cutting the paper along the appropriate lines, and include it with Form 941.

An envelope should be provided for you to send in Form 941 and the payment voucher. If you don't have one, you need to provide your own envelope and send it to the appropriate address (see below).

Mail Form 941 and Payment Voucher

If you live in Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia or Wisconsin, then you need to send your forms to one of the following addresses: Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Cincinnati, OH 45999-0005 (if you don't owe anything) or Internal Revenue Service, P.O. Box 804522, Cincinnati, OH 45280-4522 (if you do owe taxes).

If you live in Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington or Wyoming, send your forms to one of these addresses: Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, Ogden, UT 84201-0005 (if you don't owe anything) or Internal Revenue Service, P.O. Box 37941, Hartford, CT 06176-7941 (if you do owe taxes).

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