The federal law requires everyone to pay their income taxes gradually during the tax year rather than making a single payment after filing a return. This helps taxpayers to pay off their tax liabilities bit by bit while it keeps the cash flow coming into the Treasury.
How the taxes are paid during the tax year is different depending on how the taxpayer earns income, though. If you’re self-employed, you will need to estimate what you earned that’s taxable for every quarter of the year and pay the IRS.
If you’re an employee working for an employer, things change as you aren’t required to estimate taxes or do anything in regards to it. Your employer will withhold a portion of your income and forward it to the IRS. In other words, your employer will keep some of your earnings and pay the income taxes on your behalf.
Determining taxes withheld
It’s not like your employer will come up with a figure to withheld from your paychecks. There are rules for calculating the amount of federal income taxes withheld from the employee’s income. Employees need to provide their employers with the necessary information that can lead to the right amount for every pay period. That is done using Form W-4.
As an employee, you aren’t mandated to fill out Form W-4 and present a copy to your employer but it should be done regardless. Without Form W-4 on hand, your employer won’t know anything about your anticipated federal, thus, can’t come up with the right amount to withhold. You can fill out Form W4 for 2024 and get the instructions to file.
What happens if I don’t file W4?
When Form W-4 isn’t filed, the employer won’t have the information needed. The Internal Revenue Service rules are clear on this. Employers must withhold tax at the highest single rate, considering that the employee is single without any dependents and only claims the standard deduction. This outcome leads to a higher rate of federal income taxes withheld than needed and reduces cash flow. It’s important to fill out Form W4 on time so that you don’t give away your money to Uncle Sam, but don’t end up owing as well.
Stopping federal income tax withholding
Sometimes, we may not owe federal income taxes at all. Whether it’s due to withholding more than necessary in the past or simply not be required to file a federal income tax return. Cause the IRS doesn’t require taxpayers who earn less than the standard deduction amount to file a federal income tax return, it’s pointless to withhold taxes.