Taxing Matters: The Top 5 Employer Tax Publications

 

Here are five resources you can answer pressing employer tax questions quickly and efficiently:

Publication 583 – Starting a Business and Keeping Records

Starting your business can be an exciting time, but it’s incredibly important to start it off on the right foot, especially in the tax arena. Publication 583 can help guide you through the process and make sure you’re doing what’s necessary when it comes to business taxes from the get-go.

What you can find inside:

  • What new business owners need to know, like what forms to use, penalties, deductions, etc.
  • Types of business taxes
  • How to get tax help

Publication 1635 – Employer Identification Number: Understanding your EIN

If you’re a business with or without employees, it’s essential for you to obtain an EIN because it’s how the IRS identifies your business. If you have multiple businesses, you should only have one EIN per business. While it’s outlined above in Publication 583, Publication 1635 provides a more in-depth look at the EIN, its purpose and its importance.

What you can find inside:

  • What is an EIN
  • When you need an EIN
  • How to apply for an EIN

Publication 15 (Circular E) – Employer’s Tax Guide

Consider this publication your one-stop-shop for all things related to employer taxes. Publication 15 (Circular E) provides business owners a look at basic tax information.

What you can find inside:

  • Brief explanation of who are employees
  • Wages & withholding
  • Form 941 and Form 944

Publication 15A – Employer’s Supplemental Tax Guide

The Employer’s Supplemental Tax Guide helps answer some of the more complex questions around employee status.

What you can find inside:

  • Special rules for paying taxes
  • Alternative methods for figuring withholding
  • Combined Federal income tax, employee social security tax, and employee Medicare tax withholding tables

Publication 15B – Employer’s Tax Guide to Fringe Benefits

Publication 15B is just as helpful as Publication 15 and 15A because it’s your guide to fringe benefits. This gets into the nitty-gritty of some of the common fringe benefits and how to properly tax them. It’s also important to note that many fringe benefits have limits and you can always look to the most current Publication 15B for this year’s current limit.

What you can find inside:

  • Group term life
  • Moving expense reimbursements
  • Do you understand what a De Minimis benefit is?

While the list above is a base for answering some of your more common tax questions, that doesn’t mean you can’t get a little – or a lot – more specific. You can find all IRS publications here, which cover everything from the Publication 15 and the Affordable Care Act to an Armed Forces’ Tax Guide and Foreign Tax Credit for Individuals and so much more.

Please keep in mind that many of these publications are updated yearly, so it’s best practice to not only refer to them frequently but to consult your tax professional to make sure you’re on the right track to maintain compliance.


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