Do Sole Proprietors Pay Taxes Every Month?

  • John A. Osborne
  • May 22, 2023
Small Business Insurance Tennessee

As a sole proprietor, you are the only owner of your business, and you enjoy the freedom of running your business the way you want. However, being a sole proprietor comes with its responsibilities, including paying taxes. Taxes are a crucial part of running a business, and as a sole proprietor, it is essential to know when and how to pay them to avoid any legal or financial troubles.

So, do sole proprietors pay taxes every month? The answer is no. Sole proprietors do not have to pay taxes every month. However, they are required to pay estimated taxes quarterly, and they must file their tax returns annually.

What are estimated taxes?

Estimated taxes are the taxes that you pay on your income throughout the year. As a sole proprietor, you do not have an employer who withholds taxes from your paycheck, so you are responsible for paying estimated taxes on your own.

Estimated taxes are due four times a year, on April 15th, June 15th, September 15th, and January 15th of the following year. These payments are based on your income for the current year and are calculated using the estimated tax worksheet provided by the IRS.

What happens if I don’t pay my estimated taxes?

If you do not pay your estimated taxes, you may be subject to penalties and interest charges. The IRS may also require you to pay the full amount of your taxes upfront instead of in installments.

If you underestimate your taxes, you may also be subject to penalties. The IRS requires you to pay either 90% of your current year’s taxes or 100% of your previous year’s taxes, whichever is less. If you underestimate your taxes by more than 10%, you may be subject to a penalty.

How do I file my tax returns as a sole proprietor?

As a sole proprietor, you must file your tax returns annually using Schedule C (Form 1040). Schedule C is used to report your income and expenses from your business. You must also file Schedule SE (Form 1040) to report your self-employment tax, which includes Social Security and Medicare taxes.

If your business had a net profit of $400 or more, you must also pay self-employment tax. Self-employment tax is calculated as a percentage of your net profit and is currently set at 15.3%.


As a sole proprietor, paying taxes is a crucial part of running your business. Although you do not have to pay taxes every month, you must pay estimated taxes quarterly and file your tax returns annually. By understanding your tax obligations and staying on top of them, you can avoid any legal or financial troubles and focus on growing your business.