Table of Contents
- What Is the Purpose of Form 941-X?
- Where Can You Get Help?
- When Should You File Form 941-X?
- Is There a Deadline for Filing Form 941-X?
- Where Should You File Form 941-X?
- How Should You Complete Form 941-X?
- Use a Separate Form 941-X for Each Quarter You’re Correcting
- EIN, Name, and Address
- Return You’re Correcting
- Enter the Date You Discovered Errors
- Must You Make an Entry on Each Line?
- How Should You Report Negative Amounts?
- How Should You Make Entries on Form 941-X?
- What About Penalties and Interest?
- Overview of the Process
Use Form 941-X to correct errors on a Form 941 that you previously filed. Use Form 941-X to correct:
Wages, tips, and other compensation;
Income tax withheld from wages, tips, and other compensation;
Taxable social security wages;
Taxable social security tips;
Taxable Medicare wages and tips;
Taxable wages and tips subject to Additional Medicare Tax withholding;
Qualified small business payroll tax credit for increasing research activities; and
Credits for COBRA premium assistance payments.
Use Form 843, Claim for Refund and Request for Abatement, to request a refund or abatement of assessed interest or penalties. Don’t request a refund or abatement of assessed interest or penalties on Form 941 or Form 941-X.
When you discover an error on a previously filed Form 941, you must:
Correct that error using Form 941-X,
File a separate Form 941-X for each Form 941 that you’re correcting, and
File Form 941-X separately. Don’t file Form 941-X with Form 941.
If you didn’t file a Form 941 for one or more quarters, don’t use Form 941-X. Instead, file Form 941 for each of those quarters. See also When Should You File Form 941-X? below. However, if you didn’t file Forms 941 because you improperly treated workers as independent contractors or nonemployees and are now reclassifying them as employees, see the instructions for line 23, later.
Report the correction of underreported and overreported amounts for the same tax period on a single Form 941-X, unless you’re requesting a refund or abatement. If you’re requesting a refund or abatement and are correcting both underreported and overreported amounts, file one Form 941-X correcting the underreported amounts only and a second Form 941-X correcting the overreported amounts.
You’ll use the adjustment process if you underreported employment taxes and are making a payment, or if you overreported employment taxes and will be applying the credit to Form 941 for the period during which you file Form 941-X. However, see the Caution under Is There a Deadline for Filing Form 941-X, later, if you’re correcting overreported amounts during the last 90 days of a period of limitations. You’ll use the claim process if you overreported employment taxes and are requesting a refund or abatement of the overreported amount. Follow the chart on the back of Form 941-X for help in choosing whether to use the adjustment process or the claim process. Be sure to give us a detailed explanation on line 24 for each correction that you show on Form 941-X.
Continue to report current quarter fractions of cents, third-party sick pay, tips, and group-term life insurance on Form 941, lines 7–9.
You have additional requirements to complete when filing Form 941-X, such as certifying that you filed (or will file) all applicable Forms W-2 and Forms W-2c, Corrected Wage and Tax Statements, with the Social Security Administration (SSA). For corrections of overreported federal income tax, social security tax, Medicare tax, or Additional Medicare Tax, you must make any certifications that apply to your situation.
For help filing Form 941-X or for questions about federal employment taxes and tax corrections, you can:
Visit IRS.gov and enter “employment taxes” in the search box;
See Pub. 15 for correcting Form 941, or Pub. 80, Federal Tax Guide for Employers in the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, for correcting Form 941-SS; or
Call the IRS Business and Specialty Tax Line at 1-800-829-4933 or 1-800-829-4059 (TDD/TTY for persons who are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability) Monday–Friday from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. local time (Alaska and Hawaii follow Pacific time).
See also How Can You Order Forms, Instructions, and Publications from the IRS, later.
File Form 941-X when you discover an error on a previously filed Form 941.
However, if your only errors on Form 941 relate to the number of employees who received wages or to federal tax liabilities reported on Form 941, Part 2, or on Schedule B (Form 941), Report of Tax Liability for Semiweekly Schedule Depositors, don’t file Form 941-X. For more information about correcting federal tax liabilities reported on Form 941, Part 2, or on Schedule B (Form 941), see the Instructions for Schedule B (Form 941).
|If you discover an error in||Form 941-X is due|
|1.||January, February, March||April 30|
|2.||April, May, June||July 31|
|3.||July, August, September||October 31|
|4.||October, November, December||January 31|
|The dates shown in the table above apply only to corrections of underreported amounts. If any due date falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday, you may file Form 941-X on the next business day.|
Example—You owe tax.
On April 10, 2017, you discovered that you underreported $10,000 of social security and Medicare wages on your 2016 first quarter Form 941. File Form 941-X and pay the amount you owe by July 31, 2017, because you discovered the error in the second quarter of 2017, and July 31, 2017, is the due date for that quarter. If you file Form 941-X before July 31, 2017, pay the amount you owe by the time you file.
Generally, you may correct overreported taxes on a previously filed Form 941 if you file Form 941-X within 3 years of the date Form 941 was filed or 2 years from the date you paid the tax reported on Form 941, whichever is later. You may correct underreported taxes on a previously filed Form 941 if you file Form 941-X within 3 years of the date the Form 941 was filed. We call each of these time frames a “period of limitations.” For purposes of the period of limitations, Forms 941 for a calendar year are considered filed on April 15 of the succeeding year if filed before that date.
You filed your 2013 fourth quarter Form 941 on January 27, 2014, and payments were timely made. The IRS treats the return as if it were filed on April 15, 2014. On January 20, 2017, you discovered that you overreported social security and Medicare wages on that form by $350. To correct the error you must file Form 941-X by April 18, 2017, which is the end of the period of limitations for Form 941, and use the claim process.
Send your completed Form 941-X to the address shown next.
|IF you’re in||THEN use this address|
|Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin||Department of the Treasury
Internal Revenue Service
Cincinnati, OH 45999-0005
|Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wyoming||Department of the Treasury
Internal Revenue Service
Ogden, UT 84201-0005
|No legal residence or principal place of business in any state||Internal Revenue Service
P.O. Box 409101
Ogden, UT 84409
|Special filing addresses for exempt organizations; federal, state, and local governmental entities; and Indian tribal governmental entities; regardless of location||Department of the Treasury
Internal Revenue Service
Ogden, UT 84201-0005
Use a separate Form 941-X for each Form 941 that you’re correcting. For example, if you found errors on your Forms 941 for the third and fourth quarters of 2016, file one Form 941-X to correct the 2016 third quarter Form 941. File a second Form 941-X to correct the 2016 fourth quarter Form 941.
Enter your EIN, name, and address in the spaces provided. Also enter your name and EIN on the top of pages 2 and 3, and on any attachments. If your address has changed since you filed your Form 941, enter the corrected information and the IRS will update your address of record. Be sure to write your name, EIN,“ Form 941-X,” the calendar quarter you’re correcting (for example, “Quarter 2”), and the calendar year of the quarter you’re correcting on the top of any attachments.
In the box at the top of page 1, check the type of return (Form 941 or Form 941-SS) you’re correcting. Check the appropriate box for the one quarter you’re correcting. Enter the calendar year of the Form 941 you’re correcting. Enter the quarter and calendar year on pages 2 and 3. Be sure to write your name, EIN, “Form 941-X,” the quarter you’re correcting (for example, “Quarter 2”), and the calendar year of the quarter you’re correcting on the top of any attachments.
You must enter the date you discovered errors. You discover an error when you have enough information to be able to correct it. If you’re reporting several errors that you discovered at different times, enter the earliest date you discovered them here. Report any subsequent dates and related errors on line 24.
You must provide all of the information requested at the top of page 1. You must check one box (but not both) in Part 1. In Part 2, you must check the box on line 3 and any applicable boxes on lines 4 and 5. In Part 3, if any line doesn’t apply, leave it blank. Complete Parts 4 and 5 as instructed.
Form 941-X uses negative numbers to show reductions in tax (credits) and positive numbers to show additional tax (amounts you owe).
When reporting a negative amount in columns 3 and 4, use a minus sign instead of parentheses. For example, enter “-10.59” instead of “(10.59).” However, if you’re completing the return on your computer and your software only allows you to use parentheses to report negative amounts, you may use them.
You can help the IRS process Form 941-X timely and accurately if you follow these guidelines.
Type or print your entries.
Use Courier font (if possible) for all typed or computer-generated entries.
Omit dollar signs. You may use commas and decimal points, if desired. Enter dollar amounts to the left of any preprinted decimal point and cents to the right of it.
Always show an amount for cents. Don’t round entries to whole dollars.
Complete all three pages and sign Form 941-X on page 3.
Staple multiple sheets in the upper-left corner.
Generally, your correction of an underreported amount won’t be subject to a failure-to-pay penalty, FTD penalty, or interest if you:
File on time (by the due date of the quarter in which you discover the error),
Pay the amount shown on line 21 by the time you file Form 941-X,
Enter the date you discovered the error, and
Explain in detail the grounds and facts relied on to support the correction.
No correction will be eligible for interest-free treatment if any of the following apply.
The amounts underreported relate to an issue that was raised in an examination of a prior period.
You knowingly underreported your employment tax liability.
You received a notice and demand for payment.
You received a notice of determination under section 7436.
If you receive a notice about a penalty after you file this return, reply to the notice with an explanation and we will determine if you meet the reasonable-cause criteria. Don’t attach an explanation when you file your return.
To correct a previously filed Form 941, use Form 941-X to file either an adjusted employment tax return or a claim for refund or abatement. The adjustment process and the claim process are outlined below.
If you underreported the tax on a previously filed Form 941, check the box on line 1 and pay any additional amount you owe by the time you file Form 941-X. For details on how to make a payment, see the instructions for line 21, later.
Example—You underreported employment taxes.
On June 19, 2017, you discover an error that results in additional tax on your 2016 fourth quarter Form 941. File Form 941-X by July 31, 2017, and pay the amount you owe by the time you file. See When Should You File Form 941-X, earlier. Don’t attach Form 941-X to your 2017 second quarter Form 941.
If you overreported the tax on a previously filed Form 941, you may choose one of the following options.
Use the adjustment process. Check the box on line 1 to apply any credit (negative amount) from line 21 to Form 941 for the quarter during which you file Form 941-X.
Use the claim process. Check the box on line 2 to file a claim on Form 941-X requesting a refund or abatement of the amount shown on line 21.
Example—You want your overreported tax applied as a credit to Form 941.
On June 19, 2017, you discover you overreported your tax on your 2016 fourth quarter Form 941 and want to choose the adjustment process. To allow the IRS enough time to process the credit, you file Form 941-X on July 3, 2017, and take the credit on your third quarter 2017 Form 941.
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