The 5 Most Common Small Business Filing Mistakes To Avoid.

Stacy Abrams

Filing taxes for your small business can be daunting and confusing. You need to file correctly so you don’t get in trouble with the IRS, but there are a lot of rules and processes to keep track of.  

It’s time to simplify your taxes! Let’s go through the most common filing mistakes small business owners make, so you can avoid them this tax season (and the rest of the year).  

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1. Missing or incorrect information

One of the simplest mistakes is forgetting to fill out part of your tax form or entering incorrect information. Even one error could flag an audit or require you to re-file, which can cause late fees and penalties.  

The most common mistakes on tax returns include: 

  • Incorrect or missing SSN or employer ID numbers
  • Misspelled names 
  • Incorrect filing status
  • Computation errors for taxable income, withholding, and deductions
  • Withholding or incorrect estimated tax payments 
  • Failing to sign/date return  

2. Not filing or paying on time

If you miss the filing deadline for taxes, your business could face a 5% penalty per month. This fee will increase each month until you file the return. If you neglect to pay your taxes, the IRS will charge 6% interest and a late payment penalty of about .5% each month after the deadline.  

If you need extra time to pay for your taxes, you should file for an extension. Don’t miss deadlines, or you’ll end up with even more owed money on your plate! 

3. Incorrect expense tracking

The most important way to prepare your taxes for April is thorough record keeping throughout the year. Failing to properly track your expenses can be one of the costliest parts of your taxes (and the biggest headache).  

If you don’t track and categorize expenses, you could miss out on deductions that could save your business a lot of money. There are a lot of deductions you may qualify for like furniture, supplies, advertising, equipment, licenses, mileage, and more.  

Worse yet, inaccurate tracking could land you in hot water if the IRS audits you and you can’t substantiate expenses.  

Make sure you keep all receipts for expenses, payroll, sales, and other costs. This makes potential audits easier and ensures you’re receiving any applicable tax breaks.  

4. Not separating business and personal

Small business owners often pay out of pocket for a lot of business expenses. Blurring this line can actually create a problem when tax time comes around. It can be harder to prove business deductions, and you may misfile between your personal and business.  

To avoid this, you should separate expenses by using separate bank and credit accounts, tracking and storing receipts separately, and paying yourself a salary rather than using business accounts to pay for personal expenses.  

5. Not working with a professional

A lot of small business owners want to cut the expense of taxes by using tax software to do it themselves. This can work for smaller businesses, but you could still miss areas or deductions that a professional would catch. In most cases, working with a professional will actually save you a lot of time, money, and errors.

The tax process can be complicated and painful, so don’t do it alone. Start by downloading our Ultimate Small Business Tax Checklist to get started. The checklist walks you through step-by-step to organize your business taxes all-year long, so you can better avoid errors and streamline the filing process. Download the checklist here. 

About the Author

Stacy Abrams is a founder of TaxFaqs. When she’s not serving her clients, she geeks out on board games, cider, and challenging her friends to top her awesome karaoke skills. She calls Bloomington, Minnesota home.


Hello and welcome to my little "internet piece of real estate". Make yourself at home.

My name is Stephanie Smith AKA Business Chic Mama. I coined this name because it shares 3 of my passions: business, fashion design and of course being a mom.  

I'm a wifey, a mom of a high-functioning autistic daugher and step mom. My core values? God and family first. (Yeah, don't be surprised if I read a scripture verse in one of my trainings or on my YouTube Channel).

My business venture started out after graduating with a B.S in accounting from The University of South Florida. Before I even graduated, I was working for a CPA firm and thought to myself “what am I doing here”? I felt as if something wasn’t right. Although I was “good” at balancing numbers, I wasn’t really passionate about it. After I graduated, I knew that this was not the path I wanted to take. I took on a job as an assistant buyer for a major department store chain and felt much more connected to this line of work.  

After several years of being in the “buying” world, I still felt as if this was not my true calling. It was then when I decided to go back to school to get my degree in Fashion Design. After completing my second degree, a whole new world opened up and my journey as a fashion designer started.  

My journey, like all other journeys was full of twists, turns and even deep pits. I opened my first clothing boutique and clothing line OH MY BOD® not knowing a single thing about the business, when I was 28 years old. I learned the art of perserverence through my mistakes together with ALOT of hard work and determination.  

Fast forward to now, with the new “digital age” I’m completely obsessed with growing online businesses and coaching other creative, driven entrepreneurs while helping them feel fulfilled with their calling. 

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This is a fantatsic option for a person who is limited with their time or finances.

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This option is for the person who wants to earn passive income. They are willing to invest time upfront to set everything up and also willing to invest minimal time maintaining their shop.


Schedule a 20 for 20

You will get 20 intense minutes of my experise for a special introductory rate of only 20 bucks. (limited slot times available).

We can discuss your goals and come up with a basic plan to get you started.

This option is for the individual who is all in. You are ready to be a student to learn everything their is to know about starting or running a successful shop.

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