As an employer, you must pay employment taxes if you have employees. Fail to pay and the IRS will rain all over your parade.
If you have employees, you absolutely must deduct and withhold various taxes from the paychecks of your employees. Since you are deducting money from the employee’s paycheck, you are handling their funds. This fact is very important to the IRS and it places great emphasis on any failure to deposit employment taxes.
If you fail to pay employment taxes, you will be subject to a 100 percent penalty. Yes, 100 percent. Known as the “trust fund recovery penalty”, the penalty is assessed against the person responsible for paying the taxes, not the entity. The person can be the owner, corporate officer or other “responsible person.” In short, a business entity is not going to protect you from the wrath of the IRS.
Cash flow crunches are an inevitable event for practically every business. So, what happens if you make a late payment for employment taxes. Unless you can show a reasonable reason for the delay, the IRS is going to penalize you.
Late payment penalties range in amount depending on the delay. If the delay is less than six days, the penalty is two percent. Delay for six to 15 days and you are looking at five percent. More than 15 days in delay is going to push the penalty to 15 percent. If you delay this long, the IRS will be peppering you with penalty notices telling you where you stand.
Whatever you do, make sure you deposit employment taxes with the IRS in a timely fashion. Take a moment to think about the worst thing you have ever heard done by the IRS. If you fail to pay employment taxes, the actions taken by the IRS will be ten times worse and you will be the one telling horror stories.