Businesses providing certain goods and services that are subject to excise taxes must file a federal Form 720 quarterly. Here is information provided by the IRS that relates to excise taxes.
What are excise taxes?
Excise taxes are taxes made on a specific good, such as gasoline, rather than a tax on your income or sales tax. They are often included in the price of the product you are purchasing. For example, excise taxes (or highway taxes, in this example) are part of the price per gallon charged for gasoline. They can also be taxes on activities, such as wagering (gambling), indoor tanning, airline tickets, and tires.
Excise taxes may be imposed at the time of:..
- Sale by the manufacturer
- Sale by the retailer
- Use by the consumer
Often, the collected excise tax will go into trust funds earmarked for related capital projects, such as highway and airport improvements.
Since the taxes are typically blended into the price of a product, the seller or manufacturer of the item or service is responsible for filing these tax payments to the IRS — and filing Form 720.
When should an excise a tax be file?
Businesses must file the form for each quarter of the calendar year. Here are the due dates:
- Quarter 1 – January, February, March: Deadline = April 30
- Quarter 2 – April, May, June: Deadline = July 31
- Quarter 3 – July, August, September: Deadline = October 31
- Quarter 4 – October, November, December: Deadline = January 31
If the due date for filing a return falls on a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday, the due date is the next business day.
How to file
While the IRS still accepts paper Forms 720, they encourage businesses to file electronically. To help excise taxpayers do this, the IRS posts the contact information on IRS.gov of all approved e-file transmitters for excise forms. Businesses can submit forms online 24 hours a day.
However, not all excise forms can be filed electronically. Here are the forms you can file electronically.
- Form 720, Quarterly Federal Excise Tax.
- Form 2290, Heavy Highway Vehicle Use Tax.
- Form 8849, Claim for Refund of Excise Taxes, Schedules 1, 2, 3, 5, 6 and 8.
When businesses file a Form 720 electronically, it reduces processing time and errors. However, the business taxpayer’s provider will typically charge a filing fee. In other words, there’s an excise tax on filing an excise tax.
- Form 720 e-file providers page
- 2290 Modernized e-file Providers
- 8849 Modernized e-file Providers
- Excise Tax Forms and Publication