Income Tax Withholding FAQ

  1. How do I file income tax withholding returns?
  2. How do I remit income tax withholding payments?
  3. What is my payment frequency for remitting Maine income tax withholding?
  4. What is the due date for income tax withholding payments?
  5. How do I obtain a copy of the current Maine withholding tax tables?
  6. I am a seasonal employer.  How do I file and remit Maine withholding tax?
  7. How do I amend my income tax withholding return if I have understated or overstated my tax liability?
  8. I am establishing a new business.  How do I register to remit Maine income tax withholding?
  9. I am a New Hampshire employer and have Maine residents working for my business.  Am I required to withhold Maine income tax from these employees?
  10. Does Maine require a year-end reconciliation of income tax withholding liability and copies of W-2s and 1099s?
  11. How can I verify if my payroll processor has filed and paid my Maine withholding tax return and payment?
  12. How can I verify if my payroll processor has filed and paid my Maine unemployment tax return and payment?
  13. How do I verify that my payroll processor has been granted a license to provide payroll services in Maine?
  14. Does Maine Revenue Services accept facsimile signatures on tax returns completed by either a taxpayer or by a paid preparer?
  15. What happens if an employer/payer does not furnish Form W-2 or 1099 to a payee or Maine Revenue Services?

 

1. How do I file income tax withholding returns?

There are 2 ways to file Form 941ME:

  • I-File – most convenient option for sole proprietors and small businesses to file and pay income tax withholding.
    • https://portal.maine.gov/with/
    • Register then login and follow the onscreen instructions.
    • File income tax withholding returns (quarterly Form 941ME, annual Form W-3ME) and pay withholding taxes.
    • I-File cannot accept amended returns.  Amended returns must be filed on paper, see https://www.maine.gov/revenue/ for forms and instructions.
  • Maine Employers Electronic Tax Reporting System (MEETRS) – a convenient filing option for payroll processors and large employers to upload bulk .txt files containing income tax withholding detail (i.e., quarterly returns, annual reconciliation statements and annual information statements).  Payments cannot be made via the MEETRS filing option.
    • https://portal.maine.gov/meetrs/
    • Log in (this becomes your ID after the first filing).
    • Select activity and follow on screen directions.
      • Upload files containing forms in electronic format.
      • Quarterly Reports - Forms 941ME or ME UC-1
      • Amended Quarterly Withholding Return
      • Annual Reconciliation - Form W-3ME
      • Annual Wage and Payment Statements - Forms W-2, 1099, and W-2G
    • MEETRS cannot accept payment.  Please see Question 2 below regarding payments.

For questions on filing income tax withholding returns electronically, email the Withholding Unit at withholding.tax@maine.gov or call the Withholding line at (207) 626-8475 (select option 4).  Maine Revenue Services ("MRS") telephone assistance is available Monday through Friday between 9:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m., excluding holidays.

Revised: 05/11/2022

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2. How do I remit income tax withholding payments?

You may make payments electronically either using the Maine EZ Pay internet-based payment system or via EFT (ACH credit).  For more information, see Electronic Services and click on for the Maine EZ Pay and Electronic Funds Transfer links.  To speak with someone about making EFT payments, call the EFT Unit at (207) 624-5625.

Note:  If your annual payments to MRS for all taxes combined exceed $10,000 per year, you must make payments electronically.  Also, employers or non-payroll filers that are registered for Maine income tax withholding must electronically file all original Maine quarterly tax returns and annual reconciliation of Maine income tax withholding.  Taxpayers may request waivers from these requirements for good cause.  See MRS Rules 102 & 104 for more information.

  • If combined tax liability during the 12-month lookback period ending June 30th of the prior year is $10,000 or more, all Maine tax payments are required to be made electronically, using the ACH credit method.
  • Payroll processors must remit all payments electronically regardless of whether their clients are mandated to do so.

Revised: 05/11/2022

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3. What is my payment frequency for remitting Maine income tax withholding?

For tax year 2022, employers or non-payroll filers who reported Maine income tax withholding of $18,000 or more for the 12 months ending June 30, 2021 are required to make payments of income tax withholding on a semiweekly schedule.  See Question 4 below for payment due dates.

Employers or non-payroll filers who reported Maine income tax withholding of less than $18,000 for the 12 months ending June 30, 2021 are required to make payments quarterly.  If an employer or nonpayroll filer was previously making semiweekly payments, they will continue on that schedule regardless of the amount reported during the lookback period.  Employers or non-payroll filers registered for Maine income tax withholding must electronically file Maine quarterly tax returns.  Taxpayers may request waivers from the electronic filing requirements for good cause.  See MRS Rules 102 & 104 for more information.

Revised: 05/11/2022

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4. What is the due date for income tax withholding payments?

Quarterly payments are due the last day of the month following the end of the quarter, or the next business day if the last day falls on a Saturday, Sunday or holiday.  The payment is due on the same day as the quarterly return.

Semiweekly payments are based on payment of wages and are due according to the following schedule:

  • For wages paid on Wednesday, Thursday or Friday, remit withholding payment on or before the following Wednesday.
  • For wages paid on Saturday, Sunday, Monday or Tuesday, remit withholding payment on or before the following Friday.

Revised: 05/11/2022

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5. How do I obtain a copy of the current Maine withholding tax tables?

Withholding tables are available on the MRS Forms Page - choose the "Employment Taxes" category.  You can also call the MRS forms ordering line at (207) 624-7894.  State your name, address, and request for the Maine withholding tax tables.  You should receive this order in two weeks.

Revised: 05/11/2022

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6. I am a seasonal employer.  How do I file and remit Maine withholding tax?

There is no seasonal filing frequency for Maine income tax withholding.  An employer with an active withholding account must file quarterly even if there were no employees or zero withholding.  If you are registered to remit income tax withholding and do not have a withholding liability during a quarter, file a return showing zero liability.  Payment frequencies are quarterly and semiweekly.  Refer to Question 3 above to determine your payment frequency.

Revised: 01/23/2020

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7. How do I amend my income tax withholding return if I have understated or overstated my tax liability?

Download Form 941-ME from the MRS Forms Page - choose the “Employment Taxes” category.  All corrections must be made on amended returns and filed for quarterly periods only.  Amended returns can also be obtained by calling MRS at (207) 626-8475 between 9:00 p.m. and 12:00 p.m. weekdays, holidays excepted.  If you are using a touch tone phone, press 4.

Revised: 05/11/2022

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8. I am establishing a new business. How do I register to remit Maine income tax withholding?

You can download a registration application on the MRS General Forms Page or order an application by calling (207) 624-7894.  You may also register electronically at https://www.maine.gov/cgi-bin/online/suwtaxreg/index.  Call the Taxpayer Contact Center at (207) 624-9784 between 9:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. weekdays, except holidays, for assistance in filling out the registration application.  Employers or non-payroll filers registered for Maine income tax withholding must electronically file Maine quarterly tax returns.  Taxpayers may request waivers from this requirement for good cause.  See MRS Rules 102 & 104 for more information.

Revised: 05/11/2022

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9. I am a New Hampshire employer and have Maine residents working for my business.  Am I required to withhold Maine income tax from these employees?

Possibly.  You are required to withhold Maine income tax if: 1) You maintain an office in Maine or transact business in Maine; 2) You make payments to individuals (resident or nonresident) who are taxable to Maine; and 3) You are required to withhold federal income tax from those payments.  If you are not required to withhold Maine income tax, but have made payments which are taxable to Maine, you may, as a courtesy, withhold and remit Maine income tax.  If you decide not to withhold Maine income tax, those individuals must make estimated tax payments each quarter.  Estimated tax forms can be obtained by downloading from the MRS Forms Page or by calling (207) 624-7894.  For information on registering to withhold Maine income tax, refer to Question 8 above.

Revised: 05/11/2022

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10. Does Maine require a year-end reconciliation of income tax withholding liability and copies of W-2s and 1099s?

Yes.  All employers and nonwage payers who withhold Maine income tax from payments to employees or other recipients must file a year-end reconciliation, Form W-3ME.  Unless you have a waiver, Form W-3ME must be filed electronically.  If you have a waiver from the electronic filing requirement, you may download Form W-3ME from the MRS Forms Page.

MRS does not accept paper copies of payee statements (Forms W-2 and 1099).  Employers and payers that are required to electronically file Forms W-2 with the Social Security Administration or Forms 1099 with the IRS must also file these forms electronically with MRS using the Maine Employers Electronic Tax Reporting System (“MEETRS”) or via the Combined Federal/State Filing Program.  For more information about electronic filing of Forms W-2 and 1099, see the MEETRS File Upload Specifications & Instructions.  All forms W-2G are required to be filed directly with MRS.  See MRS specifications for Forms 1099 and W-2G on the MRS Electronic Services Page.

Magnetic media and paper copies will not be accepted.

If you are unable to access the specifications online, call the withholding unit at (207) 626-8475, select option 4.

Revised: 05/11/2022

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11. How can I verify if my payroll processor has filed and paid my Maine withholding tax return and payment?

Call MRS at (207) 626-8475, select option 4.  Please have your Maine withholding account number available.

Revised: 01/23/2020

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12. How can I verify if my payroll processor has filed and paid my Maine unemployment tax return and payment?

Call the Department of Labor at (207) 621-5120.  Please have your Maine unemployment account number available.

Revised: 11/07/2011

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13. How do I verify that my payroll processor has been granted a license to provide payroll services in Maine?

Call the Department of Professional and Financial Regulation at (207) 624-8527.  For more information, visit their web site at https://www.maine.gov/pfr and select Office of Consumer Credit Regulation.

Revised: 11/07/2011

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14. Does Maine Revenue Services accept facsimile signatures on tax returns completed by either a taxpayer or by a paid preparer?

Any return filed with MRS must contain a declaration that the statements contained in that return are true and made under penalties of perjury.  MRS generally follows IRS filing procedures requiring that taxpayers affix an original signature to tax returns; that is, they must personally sign their Maine return.  Facsimile signatures are not acceptable.  MRS allows paid preparers to affix their signature as the return preparer consistent with IRS Notice 2004-54/IRB 2004-33, 209, which permits paid preparers to sign returns by rubber stamp, mechanical device (such as signature pen), or computer software program (i.e., a computer program that prints the preparer's name on the signature line of the form).  When a tax return is filed electronically by a taxpayer or with the taxpayer's permission, the filing of that return constitutes a sworn statement by the taxpayer, made under penalties of perjury, that the tax liability shown on the return is correct.  No additional signature is required.  See 36 M.R.S. § 193(1).

Revised: 05/11/2022

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15. What happens if an employer/payer does not furnish Form W-2 or 1099 to a payee or Maine Revenue Services?

A person who furnishes a false or fraudulent statement or fails to furnish a statement commits a civil violation for which a fine of $50 for each failure may be imposed.

Revised: 05/11/2022

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