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NYS Tax Department: Don't slow your employees' tax refunds

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Mon, Jan 22nd 2018 02:10 pm
Avoid common errors when completing Form NYS-45 or risk delays for your employees
Editorial by the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance
The New York State Department of Taxation and Finance reminds employers to file their withholding taxes accurately and on time so they don't delay any refunds owed to their employees.
Employers must remit the personal income taxes withheld from their employees' wages, salaries, bonuses, commissions and other similar income by filing a completed Form NYS-45, quarterly combined withholding, wage reporting, and unemployment insurance return, by Jan. 31.
"Employers need to know that any error or failure to file this return on time could significantly delay any tax refunds owed to their employees," Acting Commissioner Nonie Manion said. "We're sharing some of the most common mistakes we see on Form NYS-45 to help you file a problem-free return."
Avoid Common Errors
For the fourth-quarter return, due Jan. 31, businesses must report annual wage and withholding information. The most common employer errors, which can delay refunds, are:
•Reporting an incorrect federal employer identification number (EIN). Employers must be careful to report the correct employer/payer EIN. If any numbers are transposed or incorrect, the return information may not be posted to the appropriate account.
•Failing to report all employees. The annual filing must include all employees reported at any time during the year - no matter the duration of their employment or the quarter in which they were employed.
•Reporting fourth-quarter wages only. Employers must report the annual total federal gross wages subject to withholding tax, which include wages, salaries, bonuses, commissions and other similar income. This amount should be for the full calendar year, not just the fourth quarter.
•Neglecting to report withholding for all jurisdictions. Employers must report the total New York state, New York City and Yonkers tax withheld (when applicable).
•Reporting an incorrect total for the annual tax withheld. Employers must verify the total tax withheld reported on both forms NYS-1 and NYS-45 for all four quarters reconciles with the grand total for New York state, New York City and Yonkers tax withheld (when applicable). 
Penalties For Late Filing Or Failure To File
Employers who fail to file a completed Form NYS-45 by the deadline face financial penalties of up to $10,000. They also risk delaying any tax refunds owed to their employees; that's because the Tax Department will not issue the refunds until it verifies reported withholding amounts.
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