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The Different Types Of Business Taxes & What To Know About Paying Them Accordingly

The Different Types Of Business Taxes & What To Know About Paying Them Accordingly

Taxes are a part of life, and for businesses, they are a pivotal aspect of financial responsibility. While the world of business taxes can appear complicated and challenging, understanding the different types of business taxes and how to pay them properly is essential for any business owner. In this article, we'll break down the basics of business taxes in a straightforward manner.

 Income Tax

Just as with individuals, businesses must pay income tax. However, businesses have a choice when it comes to how they pay these taxes. Sole proprietorships, partnerships, and S corporations are known as "pass-through" entities, where business income is reported on the owner's personal tax return. On the other hand, C corporations pay income tax at the corporate level.

Self-Employment Tax

If you're self-employed or a sole proprietor, you're responsible for both the employee and employer portions of Social Security and Medicare taxes. This self-employment tax is an important financial obligation for all business owners.

Employment Taxes

When you hire employees, you become responsible for employment taxes. These include Social Security, Medicare, federal income tax withholding, and federal unemployment tax (FUTA). As an employer, you are required to withhold the appropriate amounts from employees' paychecks and remit them to the IRS on a regular basis.

Sales Tax

Sales tax is typically applied to the sale of tangible goods and some services. The tax rate and regulations can vary by state, so you will have to be conversant with your state's sales tax laws. If you operate a business, you will have to collect sales tax from customers and then remit it to the state's tax authority.

Property Tax

If your business owns real property, like land or buildings, you'll be subject to property taxes. The amount you owe is typically determined by the assessed value of your property, and these taxes fund local services like schools and public infrastructure.

Use Tax

Use tax is a lesser known tax, however, its role for businesses that purchase items from out-of-state vendors is vital. If sales tax wasn't collected on the purchase, you may be required to pay use tax. It's essential to keep records of such purchases and understand your state's use tax laws.

Estimated Taxes

Estimated taxes are essential for business entities that don’t have taxes withheld from their income. This type of tax is more applicable to sole proprietors and freelancers. You'll need to calculate and pay these taxes quarterly to avoid penalties and interest.

Business License and Permit Fees

While these are seen as fees associated with the cost of doing business, they can be referred to as taxes. Many states and local jurisdictions require businesses to obtain permits or licences before they can operate legally. These fees typically vary from one jurisdiction to another.


Franchise Taxes

Some states impose franchise taxes on businesses that operate within their jurisdiction. This tax is separate from income tax and is based on a business's net worth or capital value.

Federal Excise Taxes

Certain industries, like the alcohol, tobacco, and firearms industries, are subject to federal excise taxes. If your business operates in one of these industries, you'll need to understand and comply with these specific tax regulations.


Understanding the different types of business taxes is a critical aspect of running a successful business. While tax laws and regulations can be complicated, understanding your obligations and staying compliant is essential to avoid penalties and legal issues. It is advisable to consult with a tax professional or accountant to ensure that your business is meeting its tax obligations accurately and efficiently.



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