What Is Form 1040-ES? Paying Your Estimated Taxes

what is form 1040es

If you’re self-employed and you expect to owe $1,000 or more in taxes for the year (after deductions and credits), the IRS expects you to make quarterly tax payments. That’s because unlike traditional W-2 employees, your taxes are not withheld from your pay throughout the year. To figure out if (and how much) you owe in quarterly taxes, you’ll need the Form 1040-ES. Asking yourself “What is Form 1040-ES and what do I do with it?” Here’s what you need to know.

What Is Form 1040-ES?

The Form 1040-ES is a worksheet that helps you calculate your taxable income, add up required taxes, and figure your refundable tax credits. This helps you estimate how much tax you owe for the year; this way, you can make accurate payments throughout the year.

Why Do I Need the Form 1040-ES to Pay Quarterly Taxes?

When it comes to quarterly taxes, the hardest part is usually figuring out how much you actually owe. The Form 1040-ES is almost like a miniature tax return; it will walk you through adding up your expected income and deductions for the coming year, show which credits you'd be eligible for, and then help you figure about how much you can expect to owe in taxes. If you're not sure how much you might owe in taxes for the coming year, the Form 1040-ES can help!

How Is the Form 1040-ES Different From Form 1040?

The Form 1040-ES is used to calculate estimated taxes for the current year. It is very similar to how employers use W-4 forms to withhold taxes from paychecks for their employees. Alternatively, the Form 1040 is used to report your actual income in its entirety for the previous year; it is used by all taxpayers, both traditionally and self-employed.

Who Uses the Form 1040-ES?

This form is for anyone who suspects they need to pay quarterly taxes, primarily self-employed workers who expect to owe $1,000+ in taxes for the year. You may also need to make estimated payments if you earn significant income from certain sources, like a business you own or a trust.

When Are Your Quarterly Tax Payments Due?

The 2019 deadlines for paying estimated taxes are:

    • April 15, 2019 (for earnings from January 1 - March 31)

    • June 17, 2019 (for earnings from April 1 - May 31)

    • September 16, 2019 (for earnings from June 1 - Aug. 31)

    • January 15, 2020 (for earnings from September 1 - Dec. 31)

Where Do I Send My Form 1040-ES?

You’ll only need to submit paperwork with your quarterly tax payments if you’re paying via check or money order. If you’re paying via one of those two methods, you’ll need to send in a portion of the Form 1040-ES along with your mailed-in payment.

If you’re paying your quarterly tax payments online, you can simply make a payment here without submitting any part of your Form 1040-ES.

Help! I Still Have Questions

Confused about self-employment taxes? We’re here to help! Send us you questions about quarterly payments here.

Aly KellerComment