Income tax is levied against individual income as well as directly against corporate profits. The amount varies by business structure and State. All States recognize the Federal EIN (Employer Identification Number) issued by the IRS. This number is used to track individual business tax information.
Most businesses will file quarterly estimated taxes. Funds are held by the State in an account identified by the EIN attached to that business.
Registering with the State as an entity that collects sales tax requires a separate certificate that is obtained from the State Revenue authority. Sales taxes are files quarterly or ‘part quarterly’ for businesses that exceed a certain, large amount of collections. Funds are separate from estimated income taxes (or corporate estimated taxes).
A use tax is generated when an item is sold between states. Each State may require a use tax from the final consumer (usually the same percentage as the State sales tax). This is meant to prevent someone from buying goods out of State and importing them with no tax consequences. Large business purchases may be liable for use taxes on equipment or goods transported into the State where business occurs.
With the advent of online purchases and an increase in interstate shipment of consumer goods, receiving States have begun to monitor purchases more closely – especially on items with high prices or those with added taxes, like cigarettes or alcohol.
Employers are required to collect and file withholding on employees at the State level. Usually, this doesn't need a separate registration with the State, but in some cases a separate filing is mandated – as when taxes are altered through government programs, employment zones, or for religious activities.
Approval from State taxing authorities is required when operating as a non-profit. Income (donations) may have to be reported even though they are not taxed. The State Revenue Department will examine and monitor the status of non-profits to make sure they remain within guidelines.
Some transactions are tax exempt at the State level, even for profit making companies. These may include agricultural expenditures, trust funds, pension plans and other non-taxed functions. Some are registered with the State and some only require filing the correct form when paying taxes.
Operating a game of chance (bingo, lottery, sweepstakes) may compel registration, even if it is a one-time activity. The sale of certain products, like gasoline or alcohol, also has implications on tax collection at the point of sale.
Real estate and property taxes may change if the property is used for business purposes. As with all of the taxes listed above, specific answers must be sought from the State Taxing Authority – there is too much variation between States to give exact guidelines.
Please see your state office below for issues regarding tax permits, Income Taxes, and Employment Taxes.