Company Setup: How Do I Know My Company Tax Deposit Frequency?

January 8, 2018

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Background on Payroll Deposits

Your company’s federal payroll tax deposit frequency (how often you have federal tax deposit due dates) depends on the amount of federal taxes you owe.  Federal taxes include employee federal income tax, employer and employee Social Security, and Medicare taxes.  Here is how to determine your federal deposit frequency:

For 2018, your “lookback period” is from 7/1/2016 to 6/30/2017.  The IRS defines your lookback period as July 1 through June 30 ending the previous calendar year.

  • If you owed $50,000 or less in federal taxes during this lookback period, your business is a monthly depositor, and makes monthly payroll deposits.
  • If you owed over $50,000 in federal taxes during this lookback period, your business is a semi-weekly depositor, and makes semi-weekly payroll deposits.

For further reading about making federal tax deposits, see our related blog article about payroll tax deposits, part of a series on Becoming an Employer.

To Set Up Your Payroll Deposit Frequency in Patriot Software

If you are a Full-Service Payroll customer, all taxes will be deposited for you, but you must enter your deposit frequency for each tax.  For instructions, see Entering Your Tax Deposit Frequency in Patriot Software.

In Patriot Software, you may only select either a Monthly or Semi-Weekly federal income tax deposit frequency in the Tax Deposit Frequency page. If your business has less than $2500 in federal taxes in a quarter, even though the IRS allows you to deposit quarterly, you should select “Monthly.” This is a built-in safeguard in case your tax liability increases in the future.

For more details on depositing federal taxes, see the IRS Publication 15, Employer Tax Guide.

You can find your state and local tax deposit frequencies by referring to your coupon book or statement from the taxing authority, or asking your previous payroll provider or accountant.

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