Part Time or Seasonal Help


Businesses often need to hire workers on a seasonal or part-time basis. For example, some businesses may need seasonal help for sporting events, holidays, and commercial fishing or harvest seasons. Whether you are getting paid or paying someone else, questions often arise over the tax treatment of payments for part-time and seasonal help.

Part-time and seasonal employees are subject to the same tax withholding rules that apply to other employees. For additional information on your tax responsibility as an employer, refer to Businesses with Employees. These rules are also explained in IRS Publication 15, Circular E, Employer's Tax Guide.

If you employ farm workers, follow the rules in IRS Publication 51, Circular A, Agricultural Employer's Tax Guide.

Seasonal Employer Tips for Filing Form 941:

Seasonal employers do not have to file a Form 941 for quarters in which they have no tax liability because they have paid no wages. To tell the IRS that you will not file a return for one or more quarters during the year, check the Seasonal Employer box in part 3 on the Form 941 for every quarter you file. See section 12 of Pub. 15 for more information.

When you fill out Form 941, be sure to check the box on the top of the form that corresponds to the quarter reported.  Generally, the IRS will not inquire about unfiled returns if at least one taxable return is filed each year. However, you must check the "Seasonal Employer" box on every Form 941 you file.