For small businesses, January’s arrival usually brings one very important task if you are in charge of filing and reporting for your company or employer: issuing W-2s and 1099 forms to employees or independent contractors. This year, due to the typical filing date of Jan. 31 falling on a weekend, businesses have a built-in buffer and a couple extra days to complete these tax reporting documents.
February 2, 2015 is the date to remember when preparing your business’ tax reporting forms this season, but don’t forget, even with the additional days, getting a head start on cutoff dates can save you and your company consequences, time and unneeded hassle.
According to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), businesses must send their employees’ W-2s by Feb. 2 and provide all W-2s and the transmittal Form W-3 to the Social Security Administration (SSA) by March 2 2015, which has also been extended because the normal due date falls on a weekend.
In the event that an employee does not receive a W-2 from their employer on time or at all, they can contact the IRS for assistance. Even with the extended reporting date for businesses, the IRS requests that employees wait until at least Feb. 14, allowing for slow mail delivery and other varying factors. After Feb. 14, the IRS will contact the employer for the employee, request the missing form, and send the employee Form 4852 to complete, which is a substitute for the original W-2. The payer will be notified of the penalties if it fails to comply with government regulations, which can include significant fines.
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The same applies to issuing 1099s, used for reporting company payments to freelance and contract workers, or other non-employees. In general, businesses need to supply workers with a copy of their 1099 form by Feb. 2.
According to the experts at Greatland Corporation, a company that provides W-2 and 1099 forms and e-filing services to small businesses, employers who unintentionally misclassify workers also run the risk of significant penalties and interest, so being overly cautious never hurts. Even more, if a small business fails to file a W-2 or 1099, they can be fined up to $500,000, which can even gather interest if it remains unpaid.
“We have many customers who become overwhelmed when submitting their forms and managing the deadlines over the next few months,” says Janice Krueger, a spokesperson for Greatland, one of the country’s leading providers of W-2 and 1099 products for business. “According to a Greatland survey, 39 percent of small business filers are never certain if they are meeting all rules and requirements when reporting each year. Knowing what obstacles and deadlines lie in the months ahead allows enough time for tackling even the most complicated filings.”
Estimates are that 30 percent of businesses misclassify workers; so make sure your business knows how to correctly report your workers when issuing W-2 and 1099 forms.
According to Greatland, remembering these key dates will allow W-2 & 1099 filers to stay on track this filing season:
* Feb. 2, 2015 – Due date to mail employee copies for W-2
* Feb. 2, 2015 – Due date to mail recipient copies for 1099
* Feb. 17, 2015 – Due date for 1099-MISC if reporting payments in boxes 8 or 14
* Mar. 2, 2015 – Due date to send Copy A to federal agency on paper (W-2 to SSA, 1099 to IRS)
* March 31, 2015 – Due date to send Copy A to Federal agency electronically (W-2 to SSA, 1099 to IRS)
The best way we know to file your W-2s and 1099s is through Yearli.com. Enter promo code Y24 at checkout and get 15% off your electronic filings.
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