Forms are used by the IRS as a means for gathering different information and they also serve as a means for the taxpayer to file his returns. IRS Payroll Tax Forms are used by employers to fill in the information of all the salaries they have paid and the amount that they have withheld for different taxes.
So, if you are an employer you will be getting your work done through regular employees and also from contractors who are independent. You can also have only employees or contractors, or both combined. If you employ contract labor, then you need not withhold any income tax or social security and so on from their pay. Whereas for employees you need to withhold all these items and report it to the tax authorities. For recording and reporting all this, different IRS Payroll Forms are used.
Among the various IRS Payroll Tax Forms, Form no. 941 is used for quarterly filing of Federal tax returns. This form will contain information of the total wages paid in each quarter and the amount withheld as employee federal income tax, medicare tax, social security tax and also the expense of the employer on medicare tax and social security tax. This form is to be submitted by the employer on 30th April, 31st July, 31st October and 31st January.
The employer has to fill in annually Form no. 940, which is the tax return for FUTA (Employer's Annual Federal Unemployment Tax). This tax is charged at the rate of 0.8% on $7000 of wages which is paid first each year to every employee. This form is due on 31st January of the next year for the previous year's calculations.
The other IRS Payroll Tax Forms which are to filed annually are the W-2 and W-3 forms. W-2 contains the information of individual employee's gross earnings for the year, the amount of tax which was withheld and all other information related with the payroll. The W-3 is actually a summary of the various W-2 forms, and will contain various total summaries from the individual W-2's. The employee should receive a copy of the W-2 by 31st January and the other copies of W-2 along with W-3 should reach the Social Security Administration by 28th February.
In the case of Non Profit Organisations there is a different set of IRS Payroll Tax Forms. Form W-5 will contain the earned income of the employee and any credit advance payment along with the certificate.