Helpful Tax Tools for Your Small Business

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As a small business owner, you carry a lot of responsibility when it comes to taxes. You have to pay your own taxes, sure, but you also have to manage tax withholding for your small business and employees and send out all kinds of forms—W-2s, 1099s and others. Make it easier with helpful tax tools and gear up for tax time this year.

Bookkeeping Software

Businesses pay taxes on profits—revenue minus expenses. To do your taxes right, you need to keep close track of your revenue and your expenses. Business accounting software, such as QuickBooks and others, help you do that. QuickBooks and others allow you to categorize your expenses, making it easier to fill out small business tax forms. Come tax time, you can quickly generate expense reports rather than digging through file drawers full of faded receipts.

Small Business Tax Forms

If you have employees, you're required to give each of them a W-2 form every year describing how much they earned and how much you withheld from their pay in taxes. And that's just one of the many forms your business may be obligated to send out. If you hire contractors, you might need to send them 1099-MISC forms. Forgiven any customers' debts? That calls for a 1099-C. The list goes on. Sending out the required documents is considerably easier when you make use of blank forms that are compatible with most leading software programs. Just put them in your printer, and you’re ready to go.

Document Preparation and Transmittal for Small Business Taxes

If you don't want to deal with the hassle of preparing and mailing out W-2s and 1099s, you're not alone: You didn't go into business to spend days or weeks on tax compliance (unless you’re an accountant). Let Office Depot handle the job for you. All you have to do is enter the information on a secure server, and the forms will be printed and mailed to the recipients. E-filing services can also take care of transmitting these forms to the IRS and can generate the W-3 and 1096 forms that must accompany them.

Business Tax Preparation Software

Owning a small business makes tax filing a little more complex. If you're incorporated, you may have corporate income taxes to deal with. If your business is unincorporated or a pass-through entity for tax purposes—taxed as a sole proprietorship or partnership—you may be reporting your business's profits as personal income. Operating a business out of your home only increases the complexity. That's why it's helpful to lean on tax preparation software designed specifically for business.

The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. The information should not be relied upon as replacement for professional tax advice.

With over 20 years of professional writing and editing experience, Cam Merritt specializes in writing about business and personal finance, health care and tax law. He previously worked at publications including The Boston Globe, The Des Moines Register and USA Today.

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