Obligations of taxpayers of personal income tax
Income tax, which is one of the most important obligations for an entrepreneur, usually does not have a single, fixed amount. This tax is proportional, calculated on the basis of the company's income. Therefore, in order to determine its amount, it is necessary to reliably book and summarize the company's revenues and costs.
The first obligation - keeping accounting records
In order to be able to summarize costs and revenues in the company, the entrepreneur must rely on adequate source evidence. Only in such a situation the tax offices are able to determine whether the recorded events really reflect reality.
Therefore, the entrepreneur should archive all accounting documents. Among those received from contractors, one can distinguish primarily invoices and bills. In addition, the costs can be documented in certain situations also with internal evidence - e.g. in the case of the need to post court and notary fees, travel expenses or parking a car.
On the other hand, the entrepreneur should also have income documents. Therefore, it is about - above all - invoices or bills that have been transferred to contractors. If the company uses a cash register, fiscal reports - daily or monthly, will also be a proof of income. If the taxpayer uses the exemption from the cash register and sells to natural persons who do not conduct business activity, his documentation must also include a record of non-accountable sales. In addition, among the revenues, you can find those for which it will be necessary to issue an internal ID. The most common example is interest on the capital accumulated on a bank account used for business purposes.
The second obligation - creating records
To determine the actual sum of revenues and expenses in a given period, the taxpayer must make a summary - but not in any form. For this purpose, appropriate records must be established. For entrepreneurs settling in the form of simplified accounting, there are two records (depending on the selected method of taxation) - the tax revenue and expense ledger and the revenue register.
The tax book of revenues and expenditures is the most popular method of recording, used in settling tax on general terms and as part of a flat tax. Its structure is not complicated - it consists of columns with specific contents, described in detail in the regulation of the Minister of Finance on keeping a tax book of revenues and expenses. During the tax year, the taxpayer should enter each income and cost into the appropriate column - as income from the sale of goods and services, other income, purchase of commercial goods and basic materials, purchase incidental costs, salary costs or other expenses related to business activity. At the end of each month, you should summarize the columns - both for this specific period and cumulatively, they include all revenues and costs incurred from the beginning of the tax year until a given moment.
The revenue record is intended for those entrepreneurs who have decided to settle in the form of a lump sum. They are not obliged to keep a record of costs (which does not mean that they are exempt from storing purchase documents - after all, they should be - chronologically arranged - archived). As the name suggests, Revenue ledgers are only used to post revenue. Also in this case, at the end of the month, do not forget to make a summary.
Of course, in addition to having records for income tax purposes, the entrepreneur is in many cases also obliged to keep other statements - e.g. VAT registers or records of fixed assets.
The third obligation - income tax during the year
After correctly posting the documents and making the necessary summaries, the entrepreneur can calculate the amount of the advance payment for income tax or the value of the flat-rate tax amount.
Advances for income tax are calculated by the entrepreneur who keeps a tax book of revenues and expenses. Why is there talk of advances? The settlement period for income tax is the tax year - from January 1 to December 31. However, paying income tax in one amount for the entire year could be a big problem - that's why entrepreneurs are obliged to pay monthly (or less frequently - quarterly) advances.
The basis for calculating the advance payment for income tax is income - that is the sum of revenues obtained from the beginning of the year less costs incurred from the beginning of the year. Income calculated in this way may be reduced even more by the paid social insurance contributions and the loss from previous years (up to five years back) - if any. Only after making these calculations, the entrepreneur will calculate the tax amount - that is, he will multiply the result by the tax rate - 18% or 32% for general rules or 19% for flat tax. The tax value can also be reduced - by 7.75% of the base of paid health insurance contributions, and in the case of taxation under general rules - also by the tax-free amount. The result of all calculations should be rounded at the end in accordance with the basic mathematical rules - below 50 grams should be rounded down, above - up. In this way, the value of the advance income tax is obtained.
Taxpayers who have opted for a lump sum await slightly easier calculations. In their case, the calculations differ only in that the tax base is the income from a given period, and not accrued cumulatively from the beginning of the year and not reduced by costs. However - as in the case of KPiR holders - the amount of the base may be reduced by the paid social security contributions. The tax value is calculated by multiplying the result by the tax rate - depending on the type of activity, it will be 3%, 5.5%, 8.5%, less often 17% or 20%. The amount of tax may also be reduced by the aforementioned paid health insurance contribution in the amount of 7.75% of its base, and the obtained result should be rounded off at the end.
In addition to the above rules, there are two more cases in which the amount of advance income tax is fixed. The first concerns a situation where an entrepreneur decides to make a simplified advance payment. Its amount is determined on the basis of the financial results from the previous tax year (or - in the absence of income - two years ago), and information about the selected amount should be submitted to the head of the relevant tax office. Then, the entrepreneur pays an advance payment in the agreed amount throughout the year, while keeping all the necessary records in his company. On their basis, a summary will be made at the end of the tax year.
The second situation concerns the form of settlements in the form of a tax card. In this case, the tax amount is agreed with the head of the tax office, but the difference is that the taxpayer is completely exempt from the obligation to keep records. However, this is a very specific form of billing to which a number of additional conditions must be met.
The taxpayer is obliged to pay the advance payments for income tax to the office. In this case, there are two options - income tax can be settled on a monthly or quarterly basis. In the first case, the amount of the liability should be paid by the 20th day of the month following the month for which the calculation is made. Quarterly settlements are made by the 20th day following the paid quarter. If it turns out that the 20th is a public holiday, the first working day after the 20th of the month will be appropriate. The exception are settlements in the form of a tax card - in this case, liabilities must be paid by the 7th day of the following month. The tax can be paid both at the cash desk of the office, as well as using postal orders or bank transfers.
It may also happen that the income tax advance payment does not occur. It is possible taking into account that, for example, for general rules, the tax-free amount applies (PLN 3,091 in 2013). In such a situation, the taxpayer does not have any obligations to the tax office in respect of income tax in the given period - since 2007 he is no longer required to submit PIT-5 or PIT-5K declarations, concerning precisely advance payments for income tax.
The fourth obligation - annual settlement
As mentioned earlier, the income tax paid to the tax office relates to the income that the taxpayer received during the entire tax year. Therefore, after the end of such a settlement period, the entrepreneur is obliged to submit an annual tax return to the tax office.
Entrepreneurs who settle accounts on general terms are required to submit a PIT-36 declaration to the tax office by April 30 of the next tax year (for example - the annual PIT for 2013 will have to be submitted by April 30, 2014). The taxpayer who chose the linear rules also accounts for 30 April, however, submitting a PIT-36L declaration.
Lump sums have a little less time to make the necessary summaries - in their case, the appropriate PIT-28 declaration should be submitted by January 31 of the next tax year.
In the summary declaration, the taxpayer specifies how much income (or - with a lump sum - income) in a given year and the amount of tax paid. If it turns out that the sum of the contributions is lower than the required amount of tax, you will have to pay for the shortfall. In the opposite situation, the tax office is obliged to return the overpayment to the taxpayer's bank account - within 3 months from the date of submitting the PIT declaration.