Withholding (Payroll)

Statutory Reference

Electronic Services

Definition

Generally, you must withhold Illinois Income Tax if you are required to withhold (or have a voluntary agreement to withhold) federal income tax from payments you make for

  • employee compensation (i.e., wages and salaries) paid in Illinois;
  • gambling or lottery winnings in Illinois paid to an Illinois resident;
  • unemployment paid to an Illinois resident who has asked to have Illinois taxes withheld;
  • purchases of rights to Illinois Lottery winnings; or
  • other income such as interest, dividend, or retirement income.

You must register with us to withhold Illinois Income Tax.

As a withholding agent (person who withholds income tax), you are liable for the taxes that you are required to withhold. Because we are required to collect taxes (and issue assessments when these taxes are not paid), Illinois law states that the amounts required to be withheld and paid to us (and any penalties and interest) are considered to be a tax on you. As the withholding agent you must pay the tax even if you failed to withhold the tax from your employee.

For more detailed information, see Publication 130, Who is Required to Withhold Illinois Income Tax.

Amount withheld

For the current income tax rate, see Income Tax Rates. For more detailed information and the Illinois withholding tax amounts, see

Important: Per PA 100-22, effective July 1, 2017, the Illinois income tax rate increased from 3.75% (.0375) to 4.95% (.0495).

Filing and Payment Requirements

  • 2018 Illinois Withholding Income Tax Payment and Return Due Dates
  • 2019 Illinois Withholding Income Tax Payment and Return Due Dates
  • Electronic mandate

    The Department requires all employers and payers to file the following forms electronically:

    • Starting with the 2017 tax year, federal Forms W-2, Wage and Tax Statement; W-2c, corrected Wage and Tax Statement; and W-2G, Certain Gambling Winnings, and
    • Starting with the 2018 tax year, Form IL-941, Illinois Withholding Income Tax Return.

    If you are unable to file electronically, you may request Form IL-900-EW, Waiver Request, through our Taxpayer Assistance Division at 1 800 732-8866 or 1 217 782-3336. The Waiver Request must be completed and submitted back to the Department. You will be notified if the Waiver Request is approved or denied.

Illinois withholding income tax payments are made on Form IL-501, Withholding Payment Coupon, and Illinois withholding is reported on Form IL-941, Illinois Withholding Income Tax Return.

IMPORTANT: Make sure to use the correct version of Form IL-941 for the liability period you are filing. This is a calendar year form and each year has its own form. For example, you must use a 2017 Form IL-941 for each quarter in 2017. Also, the Form IL-941 that is available on our website must have the correct federal employer identification number (FEIN) and reporting period so the scanline that is automatically produced will have the correct information. Form IL-941s are processed according to the tax year and the scanline on the form. The scanline is the numeric code number entered on the bottom of the form that includes pertinent information for the taxpayer and filing period. Common error: a Form IL-941 is printed from our website, photocopied, the original data is covered or whited out, and new information is entered. When we receive the Form, it is applied to the period and FEIN represented in the scanline on the bottom of the page. If the scanline is incorrect or cannot be read, then the Form will not be applied to the correct period or taxpayer.

All Form IL-941 returns are due quarterly. All taxpayers are assigned to one of two payment due date schedules: semi-weekly or monthly.

Filing Requirements

Quarterly Filer
Your Form IL-941 is due by the last day of the month that follows the end of the quarter.
QuarterMonths in QuarterQuarter endsIL-941 is due
1January, February, MarchMarch 31April 30
2April, May, JuneJune 30July 31
3July, August, SeptemberSeptember 30October 31
4October, November, DecemberDecember 31January 31
Note: If a due date falls on a weekend or holiday, the due date is adjusted to the next business day.

Payment Requirements

Semi-weekly Payment Schedule
Must pay electronically

Wednesday for amounts withheld on the preceding Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday, and

Friday for amounts withheld on the preceding Saturday, Sunday, Monday, or Tuesday.

Monthly Payment Schedule
Pay electronically or use Form IL-501 by the

15th of each month for amounts withheld in the preceding month.

New taxpayers: You are automatically assigned to the monthly payment schedule and quarterly filing schedule.

See Publication 131, Withholding Income Tax Payment and Filing Requirement, for more information.

Can my due date schedule change during the year?

If you are assigned to the semi-weekly due date schedule, your schedule will not change.

If you are assigned to the monthly due date schedule, and

  • you reported more than $12,000 in withholding during the “look-back” period (the one-year period ending on June 30 of the immediately preceding calendar year), you are assigned to the semi-weekly payment schedule, or
  • you exceed $12,000 in withholding during a quarter, it is your responsibility to begin to pay your Illinois withholding income tax semi-weekly in the following quarter, the remainder of the year, and the subsequent year.

For more information, see Publication 131, Withholding Income Tax Filing and Payment Requirements.

Note: If you need information related to unemployment insurance or reporting new hires, refer to the Illinois Department of Employment Security.
REVENUE DIVISION
ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF EMPLOYMENT SECURITY
33 SOUTH STATE STREET
CHICAGO ILLINOIS 60603

1 800 247-4984 or 1 312 793-4880

Questions?

  • See related publications:
  • Call us at: 1 800 732-8866 or 1 217 782-3336
  • Call TDD: 1 800 544-5304
  • Mail your IL-501 forms to:
    ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE
    PO BOX 19447
    SPRINGFIELD ILLINOIS 62794-9447
  • Mail your IL-941 forms to:
    ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE
    PO BOX 19052
    SPRINGFIELD ILLINOIS 62794-9052