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How Often Do You Need to Pay Estimated Quarterly Taxes?



Have you started earning money from freelancing, consulting, tutoring or other self-employment? Then you may need to pay "quarterly taxes."

Quarterly taxes are taxes that are paid by self-employed people or independent contractors. Salaried and wage employees have their taxes deducted from every paycheck, but independent contractors do not. Therefore, independent contractors have to pay "estimated" taxes four times per year.

Quarterly tax payments are due on January 15, April 15, June 15 and September 15.

How can you estimate your quarterly taxes?

  • Find your total tax and your withholding on last year's tax form. On a 1040, this is on lines 62 and 63.
  • Subtract your total tax from your withholding. The amount leftover is your liability.
  • Divide your liability by 4. This is your estimated quarterly liability.
  • Mail your estimated quarterly tax to the IRS. Include Form 1040-ES.

Read more: Oops! I Don’t Have Enough Money to Pay Taxes! and Make Your Tax Refund Work For You

Disclaimer: The information on this site is provided for discussion purposes only, and should not be misconstrued as tax advice. While I have made every effort to include accurate and complete information, I cannot make any guarentees, and tax laws and codes change frequently. Always consult with a qualified tax professional.

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