Instructions For Form 941 - Employer'S Quarterly Federal Tax Return - 2004


Department of the Treasury
Instructions for Form 941
Internal Revenue Service
(Rev. January 2004)
Employer’s Quarterly Federal Tax Return
Section references are to the Internal Revenue Code unless otherwise noted.
filed Form 941 by electronic or TeleFile methods, do not
Items To Note
also file a paper Form 941. For information about filing
Form 941 electronically, visit the IRS website at
Electronic filing option. File Form 941 electronically
and receive proof of filing acknowledgement. Electronic
payment options may also be available. Visit the IRS
Seasonal employers are not required to file for
website at for details.
quarters when they regularly have no tax liability because
they have paid no wages. To alert the IRS that you will
Enhanced Third-Party Designee authority. The
not have to file a return for one or more quarters during
authority given to a representative when a filer completes
the year, check the Seasonal employers box on line B
the Third-Party Designee section of Form 941 has been
of Form 941 for each quarter. See section 12 of
enhanced and is now revocable. Third-party designees
Circular E (Pub. 15), Employer’s Tax Guide, for more
will now be able to exchange information with the IRS
concerning Form 941. They may also request and
receive written tax information relating to Form 941,
Note: Employers of the following categories of workers
including copies of specific notices, correspondence, and
do not usually file Form 941.
account transcripts. The named third-party designee may
Household employees. See Pub. 926, Household
now be any individual, corporation, firm, organization, or
Employer’s Tax Guide, and Schedule H (Form 1040),
partnership. As a result, the enhanced Third-Party
Household Employment Taxes.
Designee authorization will be substantially equivalent to
Farm employees. See Form 943, Employer’s Annual
Form 8821, Tax Information Authorization. See
Federal Tax Return for Agricultural Employees, and
Third-Party Designee on page 4 for details.
Circular A (Pub. 51), Agricultural Employer’s Tax Guide.
Revision to line 2 instructions. Filers should now use
amounts that would be entered in box 1 of Form W-2,
Business reorganization or termination. If you sell or
Wage and Tax Statement, when entering wages, tips,
transfer your business, you and the new owner must
and other compensation on line 2 of Form 941. See Line
each file a return for the quarter in which the transfer
2— Total Wages and Tips, Plus Other Compensation
occurred. Each should report only the wages it paid. A
on page 3 for details.
change from one form of business to another, such as
from sole proprietorship to partnership or corporation, is
Social security wage base for 2004. Stop withholding
considered a transfer and requires a new EIN. See
social security tax after an employee reaches $87,900 in
section 1 of Circular E (Pub. 15). If a change occurs,
taxable wages during 2004. (There is no limit on the
please attach a statement to your return that shows: new
amount of wages subject to Medicare tax.)
owner’s name (or new name of the business); whether
Zero Wage return. Beginning in April of 2004, all
the business is now a sole proprietorship, partnership, or
U.S.-based (domestic) taxpayers may file their “Zero
corporation; kind of change (sale or transfer); and date of
Wage” Forms 941 by telephone using the 941TeleFile
change. When two businesses merge, the continuing firm
system. Eligible filers must have had: (a) no withholding,
must file the return for the quarter the change took place.
(b) no federal tax deposits, and (c) no taxes to report for
The other firm should file a final return.
the quarter. Dial 1-800-583-5345 (toll free) to use
Final return. If you go out of business or stop paying
wages, file a final return. Be sure to check the final
General Instructions
return box on line A and enter the date final wages were
paid in the area at the right. See the Instructions for
Forms W-2 and W-3 for information on the earlier dates
Purpose of Form
for the expedited furnishing and filing of Form W-2 when
a final Form 941 is filed.
Use Form 941 to report income tax that you withheld
from wages (including tips), distributions from
Preparing the Form
nonqualified pension plans (including nongovernmental
The following will allow the IRS to process Form 941
section 457(b) plans), supplemental unemployment
faster and more accurately:
compensation benefits, and third-party payments of sick
Make dollar entries without the dollar sign and comma
pay. Also use Form 941 to report social security and
Medicare taxes.
Enter negative amounts in parentheses.
File the Form 941 that has your preprinted name and
Telephone Help
You can call the IRS toll free at 1-800-829-4933 to order
FTD coupons (Form 8109) and for answers to your
When To File
questions about completing Form 941, tax deposit rules,
File starting with the first quarter in which you are
or obtaining an employer identification number (EIN).
required to withhold income tax or pay wages subject to
Who Must File
social security and Medicare taxes.
Employers who withhold income tax on wages, or who
Due Date
must pay social security or Medicare tax, must file Form
941 each calendar quarter. After you file your first Form
March 31
April 30
941, you must file a return for each quarter, even if you
June 30
July 31
have no taxes to report (but see the seasonal
Sept. 30
Oct. 31
employers and final return information below). If you
Dec. 31
Jan. 31
Cat. No. 14625L


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