Proprietors' Tax Returns
If you are a sole proprietor, you must file Schedule C (or
Schedule C-EZ if you qualify),
Profit or Loss From Business, with your Form 1040, U.S.
Individual Income Tax Return, on an annual basis, to report
your business income and deductions. Sole proprietors are also
required to file Schedule SE, Self-Employment Tax, with
their Form 1040 as well. There may be other forms and schedules
required, depending on the specific nature of your business
activities during the year.
For calendar year taxpayers, the filing and payment of tax
due date for these returns and schedules is April 15.
If you want an automatic four-month extension to file these
returns, you can file Form 4868, Application For Automatic
Extension of Time To File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return,
by April 15. However, you must pay any tax you estimate will be
due by April 15 or you may be subject to interest
and penalties on overdue taxes. Your actual return would
then be due on August 15.
Remember, the automatic extension only
applies to the filing of your return, not to the
payment of any tax that may be due. You must pay
any tax that is due by April 15th, or
you may be subject to interest and penalties on
the overdue taxes.
If you can't get everything filed by August 15 and you decide
that you want an additional two-month extension to file your
returns, you must file Form 2688, Application for Additional
Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return,
by August 15. This additional two-month extension is not
automatic - you must give the IRS a reason as to why you need
the additional time to file. If the IRS grants you this
two-month extension, your return must be filed by October 15.
Remember, the two-month extension applies only to the filing of
your return, not to the payment of any tax you may owe.
If you know you are going to need more time
than the four-month automatic extension, it's
wise to apply for the additional two-month
extension as soon as possible. Because the
second extension is not automatic, the sooner
you know whether the IRS has granted it, the
Fiscal year taxpayers. If you are a sole proprietor
who uses a fiscal year rather than a calendar year, you must
file your individual income tax return (including all the
applicable schedules) no later than the 15th day of the fourth
month after the end of your tax year. You are entitled to the
same automatic four-month extension to file your return that a
calendar year taxpayer is entitled to, but you must file for the
extension on Form 4868 by the due date for filing the return.
The due date for the filing of your return is then the 15th day
of the fourth month after the original due date of your return.
You may apply for an additional two-month extension (which is
granted at the IRS's discretion). You should file the extension
request by the 15th day of the fourth month of your automatic
If the second extension is granted, your return will be due
on the 15th day of the second month after your automatic
four-month extension was granted.
Among the Business Tools are Form
1040, Schedule C,
Schedule C-EZ, Schedule
SE and Form
4868. They are in Adobe Acrobat .pdf format,
and you will need Acrobat Reader 4.0 to view the
files and print them. A free version of Acrobat
4.0 is available in the Business Tools area as