I'm behind on my mortgage payments. Would the government object if I temporarily suspended my Oklahoma estimated tax payments so I can deal with this emergency?

Well, as the saying goes, if you have to ask, you probably already know the answer. Yes, the IRS will indeed object if you stop sending in your estimated taxes in order to deal with a financial emergency. 

Look at it this way: if you were a salaried employee rather than an independent contractor in Oklahoma, you wouldn't even have the option of temporarily ceasing your tax payments, since these taxes are deducted automatically from your weekly or biweekly paycheck. (In fact, this is why the government insists on withholding taxes in the first place, so employees don't feel they have a choice about how much of their income they should send to the IRS).

To get back to your specific question, the IRS will indeed be suspicious if you suddenly stop paying your estimated taxes. They will not forgive these taxes simply because of your financial difficulties. Likely, the missing payments will be lumped in with your end-of-year return, and the IRS may choose to impose penalties and interest if you owe a few thousand dollars (though this is more likely if you are on the higher end of the pay scale, rather than earning a more modest amount).

In the end, your best strategy is not even to consider withholding your estimated taxes as a “choice” in the first place. When you are paid by a client, deduct 20 or 25 percent of the amount and put it into a separate bank account devoted to your taxes. Questions? Call the Oklahoma tax experts at Travis W. Watkins, PC today (800-721-7054) for a free consultation!