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State Taxes

Small businesses owners are dependent upon each state for their liability when it comes to payroll taxes for their state of operation. Each state varies, and there are even some states that do not withhold state tax and require no state income tax filing. Each state requires that an employer deduct and withhold unemployment tax, just the same as at the federal level.

Generally, however tax rates for the state level on unemployment tax will vary depending upon the employment history of the business. Once in business long enough, a tax rate can be established based upon the employer's experience with benefit charges and taxable payroll.

Taxes are deducted in the same manner as federal taxes, each pay period and filed with the applicable state on a monthly basis. Most states will also require a quarterly information report comparable to the 941 federal forms. Withholding rates on the state level are much lower than the federal rates. Also, there are limits of liability. Once a particular level is reached in income, the tax rate may be reduced, or sometimes eliminated.

Small businesses operating in one more than one state may find themselves liable for payroll tax in each state. If you operate in multiple states, you should contact each state of operation to determine your liability and setup the necessary accounts for deductions. Quite often accountants that handle state taxes in your area will be aware of each state's filing requirements and be able to assist you.

The greatest concern as a small business that you will have on the state level will be the unemployment tax that you are assessed. Unemployment compensation is administered on the state level, and can therefore greatly affect your tax liability. Your tax rating determines your tax liability, and new businesses are given a standard rating until enough time has passed with operations to assess an individual rating based on employee benefit charges and gross taxable payroll.

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