Understanding and fulfilling your tax obligations remain one of the biggest challenges with running a business. You usually complete your personal tax returns once a year with a few forms. But preparing and filing your business taxes can prove, for lack of a better term, taxing. Even more so if you do not know about your state’s particular tax regulations.
As a result, everyone faces the chore of gathering various documents to complete the annual ritual of filling of IRS Form 1040. And the same goes for whatever form your state may require. This means you may need to get familiar with some of the forms that are new to you.
The financial state of your business may be stagnant. Still tax law changes during the past year may require you to complete some new forms and calculations. If you’re not on top of your taxes you’re also probably missing out on some legal tax reduction tactics.
State Tax Obligation
If you are not up to speed with your tax obligation you risk exposing yourself and your business to risks. For example, you might face a penalty for failure to file, be required to pay interest on the amount due or might have a large tax bill coming your way by not planning in advance to handle your taxes. That is why you should be informed on your tax obligation, your state’s particular regulations and other issues related to your taxes.
Very often businesses will hire a tax adviser or go about it on their own. Whether you decide to hire tax advisers or deal with taxes on your own, your best strategy for reducing your small-business taxes and complying with tax laws is to educate yourself.
Besides avoiding penalties, not knowing about your taxes could make you lose out on some much-needed cash. For example, small businesses have to stretch their financial resources especially when it comes to business expenses. These can include a myriad of expenditures that include vehicle expenses, wages, rent on business property, utilities, insurance and others. As a small business owner, you can minimize your business taxes by writing off a lot of those operational expenses come tax season.
Knowing that you need to fill your 1040 form alone is not enough. For example, you need to know what new legislation has been passed in regard to your taxes. Business taxes often vary by state. As a result, you will also need to know what regulations apply to you. And what tax write-offs are available in your particular state.
State tax websites are your small business’ one-stop-shop for specifics. For example, they provide tax regulations, tax forms, and answers to questions you may have. Below are the state tax websites that can provide you with valuable information about your state’s taxes, form 1040, sales tax, business tax by state and others. These websites will also provide you with insights, access forms, instructions on how to fill them, and worksheets for each tax division.
State Tax Websites
The Alabama Department of Revenue’s site has this nifty website that offers valuable information on the services. From finding tax forms to designation of your business tax and also offers great advice. Additionally, the site has a mobile app and My Alabama taxes to help you navigate your tax queries.
Alaska’s Department of Revenue website comes with a dedicated tax division section that includes information about the state’s Permanent Fund Dividend, forms, services for businesses and revenue sources book.
Besides forms and regulations Arizona’s department of revenue’s website comes with complete taxpayer education section on its YouTube channel. This comes in handy if you want to get up to speed with license renewals, electronic payments, forms, reporting your business taxes and other issues.
The Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration’s site offers insightful information on business taxes, motor vehicles, sales and use tax and forms.
The state of California’s franchise and tax board’s website has a straight forward and easy to navigate website. It comes with designated pages for forms, how to file business taxes, payment options and how to collect refunds.
Department of Revenue Services allows you to find forms, register your business to file and pay online. Its Taxpayer Service center plans to launch its myconnectCT solution to help streamline processing as well as round the clock self-service option.
District of Columbia
Iowa’s Department of Revenue has resources on business taxes, forms for filling, IA 1040 instruction and others. In addition, the site offers subscriptions to those who want to get frequent news on the department’s work.
Kentucky’s Revenue Cabinet has a handy tax answer section that allows you to look through business resources. For example, you’ll find information on income taxes, sales and excise taxes, forms as well as other changes in the state’s tax legislation.
The Louisiana Department of Revenue’s website includes a variety of tax filing options. As a result, you can file tax returns and make e-payments. You’ll also find taxpayer education, online forms, and resources for businesses.
Maine’s Revenue Services offers resources on tax filling and payment; starts of refunds; forms, tax registration and tax relief with additional online services. The business resources also include some valuable tax information along with information on how to grow your company in Maine.
The Comptroller of Maryland offers a trove of resources. For example, you’ll find tax alerts, tax calculators, tax credits, information on filing deadlines, forms and due dates. You’ll also find online business services.
The Michigan Department of Treasury offers forms, news and payments via its e-services. As a result, its SIGMA Vendor Self Service (VSS) system allows you, as a payee/vendor/grantee, to manage your information, view your financial transactions, forms, view business and grant opportunities.
Montana’s Department of Revenue comes with forms, information on taxes and fees and online services. It also includes a calendar and due dates for planning your taxes. On the business side of taxes, Montana’s site provides a handy calendar with important tax dates in the state for different industries.
New York’s Department of Taxation and Finance offers a one-stop site for businesses including filling returns, make payments online, find forms, check on the status of refunds and other tax information.
The State Tax Department categorizes tax information on its website. For example, it provides information and forms for business taxes, taxes on alcohol, coal severance tax, corporate income tax, fiduciary tax, income tax withholding and other tax-related information.
The Ohio Department of Taxation offers online business tax services such as filling online, ID confirmation quiz, get forms, check refund status, filing season central, online payment and other tax pertinent information.
The Oregon Department of Revenue comes with a diverse set of tools to help you navigate through your taxes. From finding forms, tax calculator and dedicated pages for individual and business tax issues.
The Pennsylvania revenue site provides all-round information on tax-related issues and has its own blog. From finding forms, resources for businesses, e-services and making payment, the site has it all.
The Rhode Island department of taxation website comes complete with a variety of features. For example, there are tax advisories, declaratory rulings, forms, an online business tax filings section and much more.
The Tax Commission of Utah offers general information and line by line guide through the tax process. The website has a dedicated section for forms, refunds, file and payment options and taxpayer access point.
Vermont’s Department of Taxes offers a comprehensive guide through the tax process. For example, the site is designed with dedicated pages for forms and publication, tax guidelines, business-related taxes, data and statistics and even a help section.
This site comes with a complete information portal containing considerable resources. For example, you’ll find forms, payment and penalties, a section dedicated for businesses and credit and a deduction page. The department of taxation even has a sign-up option for users to receive email alerts.
The Department of Revenue has a section dedicated for businesses. This contains important resources. For example, it includes a section for forms, status of refunds, audit collections, research and other pertinent information.
Wisconsin’s Department of Revenue offers resources on taxes for businesses and individuals. For example, it includes items such as bill notices, online tax registration, forms, resources for business development and others.
The Value of Organizing Important Resources
For your business to grow you will need to get started by organizing your resources. Top on the list is the need to make sure your finances are in order. Tracking your expense receipts and transactions can help you get ready for taxes that need to be paid during the course of the year. It also can help mitigate any legal action that can come your way via the IRS.
It is imperative that you have an efficient record-keeping system. A good record not only helps you in your tax obligations but also helps to keep track of your business financial health and performance during the year. Things like how are your profits running compared with last year? Can you afford to hire new staff? Analyzing your monthly or quarterly business financial statements can help you answer these important business questions.
Also don’t forget, that you will still need your receipts to back up your claims in case you are audited. As a result, if your business records have been lost or destroyed, you will need duplicate bills from your suppliers. You shouldn’t have a great deal of trouble getting copies of receipts from utilities, rent, credit cards, and other bills.
Digital Technology and Taxes
There are a number of financial software packages on the market that can help you keep track of your spending for tax purposes. Ask friends, family or business associates on which software help their business. Most importantly you will need to figure out how to use the software, and you need to enter a great deal of data for it to be useful to you come tax time.
By using your computer to prepare your income tax return, you can do an increasing number of other tax activities through the Internet. For example, you can go search for some good online tax resources such as your state’s tax website. These sites can help you track down factual information regarding your taxes. Also bookmark other sites that provide you with guidance, tips and tutorials for your business needs.
Aside from organizing your finances, you will need to make sure your office space is organized too. Research on how to design your workspace for maximum productivity and make your space easy to navigate through.
You might consider going paperless as well. For example, store your documents in the cloud. This can help reduce the paper clutter in your office. As a result, it helps you access them remotely. An organized workstation can help you get what you want when you need it without the need to rummage around the entire office. Keep an updated list of contact information for customers and suppliers.
Having organized inventory and sales reports help bring efficiency to your business. However, you have to make sure your data is backed up and protected.
Time and the Tax Calendar
How you spend your time is also important since time is literally money. For example, build the habit of using an efficient calendar for your business to track and schedule your business operations. This includes being fully aware of the tax calendar year.
Organize your resources. As a result, they become available in a way that makes them easy to retrieve and use. This is the hallmark of an efficient business. No matter the size of your business, how you organize and use your resources determines your bottom line and also your productivity. As a result, the key to any business is identifying the needs of your organization, weighing the options available and efficiently using the tools available to it.