When are the quarterly estimated tax payments due?

Estimated tax payment formWhen to Pay Estimated Tax

For estimated tax purposes, the year is divided into four payment periods. Each period has a specific payment due date. Although they are often referred to as “quarterly payments” the estimated tax due dates are not equally spaced throughout the year and do NOT correspond directly to calendar quarters. If you do not pay enough tax by the due date of each payment period, you may be charged a penalty even if you are due a refund when you file your income tax return at the end of the year.

If you mail your estimated tax payment and the date of the U.S. postmark is on or before the due date, the payment generally will be considered to be on time. The payment periods and due dates for estimated tax payments are shown next.

January 1 – March 31: Due date April 15
April 1 – May 31: Due date June 15
June 1 – August 31: Due date September 15
September 1 – Deccember 31: Due date January 15 of the following year

If the due date for making an estimated tax payment falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday, the payment will be on time if you make it on the next day that is not a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday.

If your tax year does not begin on January 1, see the special rules for fiscal year taxpayers in Chapter 2 of Publication 505. For special rules for farmers and fishermen, see Chapter 2 of Publication 505.

Last update: June 14, 2014
Source: Internal Revenue Service, Publication 505