Employer Payroll Taxes

In this blog post, I’m going to show you how to enroll your small business with the proper taxing authorities.


For each payroll, whether that’s weekly, biweekly, semi-monthly (twice a month) or monthly, the employer payroll taxes will have to be paid, but first, you have to enroll your business with the proper taxing authorities.

I’m going to tell you how to do this, but let me first tell you about something else you need to have when you have employees.


Let’s say you plan on hiring employees for your small business. Of course there are certain rules you must follow, like don’t discriminate in hiring, pay at least the Federal or State minimum wage, allow your employees Family and Medical Leave (FMLA) without firing them, keep them safe in the workplace (OSHA), etc. Most of these you should be aware of if you’ve ever been an employee, which I’m assuming is most of us. But there are certain of these rules that must be posted in your place of business where all the employees can see them.


how to do payroll

Department of Labor Requires Labor Posters to be displayed


In learning how to do payroll, there are certain things every small business owner needs to do. When you have employees, there are certain posters you need to display in an open area that your employees frequent. This is the law. A break room or lunchroom is perfect, or even the copy/mail room will work. Anywhere your employees will all have access to.

These posters vary a bit by industry and state. You can find out exactly which posters you will need to display at this website. You can buy these posters from an office supply store. But, if you want to save some money, they can be downloaded and printed for free from the web.


how to do payroll labor poster


Some of the basic posters are as follows:


Equal Employment Opportunity
Fair Labor Standards Act
Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA)
U.S. Employment & Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA)


Unemployment Compensation
Workers Compensation
Minimum Wage
Minor Labor Laws
Public Employee Risk Reduction
Workplace Domestic Violence
Fair Employment Practices Law

Again, you don’t have to pay for these posters. They can be downloaded for free. Print them and display them and stay in compliance.  And that link is not an affiliate link, it’s provided for your reference only.  If you have employees, you need these. And it wouldn’t hurt to read them, too.


So, the next step in how to do payroll is to enroll your small business with the right taxing authorities.  Remember, you are responsible for abiding by these regulations whether you do payroll for yourself or have a payroll services firm or bookkeeper do it for you.  So be aware.


Enrolling your small business for Employer Payroll Taxes


Employer payroll tax enrollment with the correct taxing authorities is one of the first steps in learning how to do payroll.


Enroll with the IRS and your State and Locality

Before you hire your first employee, you need to get a Federal Employer Identification Number (EIN). You can do this at the IRS website (www.irs.gov). It doesn’t matter whether your small business is a corporation, partnership, sole proprietorship, or LLC, you need an EIN if you have employees and are going to pay any employer payroll taxes.

Also, while you’re on the IRS website, search for EFTPS, the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System, and sign up for making your federal tax payments. You can make them at a bank, online, or over the phone, whatever is best for you.

As you’re going thru this process, print out the forms you fill out and the confirmations along the way, and start a Payroll folder. This will become a part of your Reference Files.


Next, you will have to enroll your small business for these other employer payroll taxes, state employment taxes, as well as your local employment taxes. Go online to your state and city/township/county website and look for a tab for Businesses or Employers, and follow the instructions there for employer payroll taxes.


For example, let’s say you’re in Ohio. Go to the Ohio Department of Taxation website. Click on Businesses. From there click on Ohio Taxes. On that page see a line item for Employer Withholding. Click on that, and the next page has a line item for General Information. Click on that and you get a lot of information on how to do payroll in your state.

You need to enroll your small business for withholding taxes, as well as unemployment taxes and workers compensation. Each state and locality is different. What happens here in Ohio may not happen in Oregon. I encourage you to visit the websites for your State and Locality, and look for a tab for Businesses or Employers to seek out specific information for your location.

The next step in how to do payroll is actually hiring employees. There are certain forms you should have filled out for these employer payroll taxes.  So my next blog post will be about employment forms.

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