April 2023: The Small Business Owner’s HR, Benefits, Payroll, and Tax Compliance Deadlines

Paige Smith

April is one of the most important months of the year for business owners. Below, we’ve compiled critical tax, payroll, and HR compliance dates you need to keep track of this month. 

Federal holidays

April 17, 2023

Emancipation Day (observed)

April 16 is Emancipation Day, a regional government holiday observed in Washington, D.C. Because April 16 falls on a Sunday this year, the holiday will be observed on Monday, April 17. That means most federal and state tax deadlines will be moved to Tuesday, April 18 instead.  

Emancipation Day is celebrated in remembrance of April 16, 1862, the day President Abraham Lincoln signed the District of Columbia Compensated Emancipation Act, which freed over 3,000 slaves in the D.C. area. 

Patriots’ Day

Patriots’ Day is a state holiday celebrated in Maine and Massachusetts on the third Monday of April. The holiday commemorates the opening battles of the American Revolution in 1775. Like the rest of the country, Maine and Massachusetts residents have until April 18 to file their taxes. 

Tax and payroll compliance deadlines

Payroll tax deposits (for semi-weekly depositors)

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requires employers who file Forms 940 and 941 to deposit payroll taxes at different frequencies throughout the year. 

If you report more than $50,000 in payroll taxes during the lookback period of July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022, you’re considered a semi-weekly depositor and must follow the schedule below:

If payday for your employees is on…Deposit employment taxes by…
WednesdayThe following Wednesday
ThursdayThe following Wednesday
FridayThe following Wednesday
SaturdayThe following Friday
SundayThe following Friday
MondayThe following Friday
TuesdayThe following Friday

However, if you accumulate $100,000 or more of tax liability in a single day, the IRS requires you to deposit the amount due by the following business day, regardless of whether you normally deposit on a semi-weekly or monthly basis (more on monthly deposits below).

To learn more about federal payroll tax deposits, read Publication 15

Keep in mind that some state and local governments that collect payroll taxes will also expect their own deposits, and those deadlines may be different from the federal ones. For more information, contact your state and local tax agencies directly. 

April 1, 2023

Start of Q2 for calendar fiscal year

If your company follows a calendar year cycle, the second quarter of the year begins on April 1, 2023. 

April 10, 2023

Employee tip reporting deadline for March 2023

Your employees are required to report to you any tips of $20 or more that they earned during the month of March 2023. You can learn more about tip withholding and reporting requirements here

April 17, 2023

Form 990-T filing deadline

Exempt organizations—like churches, nonprofits, or educational groups—use Form 990-T to report unrelated business income, report unrelated business income tax liability, and report proxy tax liability. 

If your exempt organization has unrelated business taxable income (UBTI), you must file Form 990-T, along with a separate Schedule A for each separate unrelated trade or business. If you’re an exempt organization and don’t have any UBTI, you just need to file Form 990-T by itself; you don’t need to complete or attach a Schedule A. 

For more information, read the IRS instructions

Form 1120-POL filing deadline

Political organizations and certain exempt organizations must file Form 1120-POL to report their political organization taxable income and income tax liability. The form is due on the 15th day of the fourth month following the end of the political organization’s taxable year. If you operate on a calendar year, Form 1120-POL is due April 17. 

April 18, 2023

Payroll tax deposits for monthly depositors

If your company follows the monthly payroll tax deposit schedule (meaning that you reported less than $50,000 in payroll taxes during the lookback period), then your tax deposit for March payrolls is due on April 18. 

Form 1120 and income taxes due for corporations

Most C corporations that operate on a calendar year are required to submit Form 1120 and the appropriate taxes to the IRS. Because Washington D.C. observes Emancipation Day on April 17, the tax deadline for everyone is April 18 instead.  

You can file your returns by mail or online, but the IRS recommends e-filing because it’s faster. If your C corp has $10 million or more in assets and if you file 250 or more information returns per year (i.e. W-2s, 1099s), you’re required to file your taxes electronically. 

Find Form 1120 e-filing guidelines and general instructions on the IRS website. If you need to request an automatic six-month extension on filing your taxes, file Form 7004 and make sure you deposit any estimated taxes. 

Form 1120-F filing deadline

Foreign corporations use Form 1120-F to report their income, gains, losses, deductions, and credits, and to calculate their US income tax liability. If you operate a foreign corporation, you must file Form 1120-F by April 18 if you:

  • Were engaged in a trade or business in the United States, whether or not it had US source income from that trade or business, and whether or not income from such trade or business is exempt from US tax under a tax treaty
  • Had income, gains, or losses treated as if they were effectively connected with the conduct of a US trade or business
  • Were not engaged in a trade or business in the United States, but had income from any US source
  • Were, or had a branch that was, a qualified derivatives dealer (QDD)

You can learn more about the requirements and exceptions for who needs to file Form 1120-F, as well as the different filing deadlines, here

Form 1040 and income taxes due for sole proprietors and single-member LLCs

If you’re a sole proprietor or single-member LLC who reports your income through your personal tax returns, you must submit Form 1040 and Schedule C to the IRS by April 18. 

However, the IRS has extended the tax filing and payment deadline to October 16, 2023 for people and businesses located in the following FEMA-designated disaster areas: 

For an automatic six-month extension, file Form 4868 and deposit any estimated taxes. 

Form 1040-ES and estimated tax payment due for first quarter for 2023

If you’re a sole proprietor, partner, or S corp shareholder who expects to owe at least $1,000 in taxes for 2023, you must make quarterly estimated tax payments throughout the year using Form 1040-ES. You also have to make estimated payments if you’re a corporation that expects to owe at least $500 in taxes. 

The first installment of 2023 estimated taxes is due by April 18. However, if your business is located in one of the FEMA-designated disaster areas listed above, you have until October 16, 2023. Corporations must submit these payments via the EFTPS, while individuals can do it through the EFTPS, by mail, by phone, or through the IRS2Go app

To learn more about federal estimated tax payments, read Publication 505. Make sure you check with your state for state quarterly estimated tax obligations as well. 

State income taxes

Most states that levy income taxes require you to file your income tax returns by April 18. However, there are a handful of exceptions. Iowa and Virginia have deadlines of May 1, Delaware’s deadline is May 2, and Louisiana’s deadline is May 15. California has also extended its state tax filing deadline to May 15 for businesses located in disaster areas. 

Check out your state department of revenue for the most updated information on your state taxes and filing deadlines. 

Form 8813 quarterly payment voucher due for partnerships

If you’re a partnership, you need to use Form 8813 to pay any withheld tax due by April 18. Read more about Form 8813 from the IRS here

April 30, 2023

Form 941 filing deadline

Most businesses with at least one employee must file Form 941 to report any income taxes, Social Security taxes, or Medicare taxes withheld from their staff’s paychecks and pay their share of payroll taxes every quarter—even if they don’t have any employees for part of the year.

The first Form 941 for 2023 and the accompanying payroll tax payment are due on April 28. However, if you made the full deposit for the quarter on time, you automatically get an additional 10 business days to file the form.

You can mail the document along with your payment voucher to the IRS. Your mailing address depends on the state your business is located in and whether or not your payment is enclosed, so make sure you review the tax form instructions for more information. 

You can also e-file instead through the EFTPS.

Keep in mind that if your business is in one of the FEMA-designated disaster areas in California, Alabama, or Georgia, you have until October 16, 2023 to make these payments. 

Form 720 filing deadline

If your business manufactures or sells certain goods and services, you must report and pay excise taxes to the IRS on a quarterly basis using Form 720. You can see the full list of the goods and services that incur excise taxes on the document itself. 

If your business deals with any of them, the first of your four payments for the 2023 tax year is due April 30. If you want to e-file, you can pay your excise taxes through the EFTPS. If you want to mail the tax form to the IRS, send the form, along with your check or money order payment and the Form 720-V payment voucher (found on the last page of Form 720) to the following address:

Department of the Treasury
Internal Revenue Service
Ogden, UT 84201-0009

Payroll taxes for states and locals

Unemployment insurance tax and tax returns for states: These are generally due at the end of the month following the end of the calendar quarter (i.e. April 30, July 31, October 31, and January 31). Check with your specific state’s unemployment insurance tax collectors to confirm when your unemployment taxes are due for the first quarter in 2023. Unemployment taxes are generally owed for all employees in all states in the US.

State income tax withholding: Most states also assess income taxes that must be withheld from your employees’ paychecks then paid to the state agencies at specific intervals, depending on the amount of tax you pay to the state annually. Many of these states have quarter returns that are due at the end of each calendar quarter. States without income tax are: Alaska, Florida, Nevada, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Washington, and Wyoming. If you have employees outside of the states listed above, chances are you owe payroll taxes to these state agencies. 

Local taxes: Several states also impose local payroll taxes that are collected by local taxing authorities. You may owe local taxes and may need to file quarterly tax returns this month if you have employees working in the following states: Alabama, Colorado, Delaware, Indiana (collected by the state), Kentucky, Maryland (collected by the state), New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia.

HR compliance deadlines

April 18, 2023

Form 8928 filing deadline

If you offer group health plans to your employees, you’re required to self-report any failures to comply with federal group health plan mandates, such as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA).

You need to report any compliance failures from 2022 using Form 8928. If you don’t correct those failures in a timely fashion, you can also use this document to report the corresponding excise taxes. Any taxes owed must be paid to the IRS at this time. 

For more information, review the form instructions from the IRS. 

First quarterly contribution for defined benefit pension plans due

If you have a defined benefit pension plan, you must make annual contributions to that plan by a specified date to avoid paying excise taxes. If a plan doesn’t meet the funding minimum by the end of the plan year, employers must make their annual contributions in four quarterly payments instead. 

Businesses with plan years that ended on July 31, 2022 and didn’t meet last year’s funding requirements must meet their minimum quarterly funding contribution by April 18. All electronic transfers must be completed and all mailed checks must be postmarked by this date to avoid penalties. 

Retirement plan employer contributions due for certain businesses

If you have a C corp (or an LLC taxed as a C corp), a single-member LLC, or a sole proprietor, you must deposit your employer contribution for the 2022 tax year by April 18 if you want to deduct that contribution from your taxable income. 

If you’ve filed an extension for your tax return, you have until your new filing deadline or the date you file your return (whichever comes first) to make these deductible contributions.

April 28, 2023

Deadline to give summary plan descriptions to employees

Benefits plans can be confusing, which is why the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) requires employers to provide employees with a simplified version of their benefits plan, called a summary plan description (SPD). The SPD covers an employee’s rights, benefits, and responsibilities under the plan. 

You must distribute the SPD to your plan participants within 90 days of the adoption of a new plan. If you follow a calendar year plan, April 28 is your deadline.

Paige Smith Paige is a content marketing writer specializing in business, finance, and tech. She regularly writes for a number of B2B industry leaders, including fintech companies and small business lenders. See more of her work here:
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