Procrastination Nation: When Americans Really Do Their Taxes

There are two types of people in the world: people who do their taxes early and people who wait until the very last minute.

With Tax Day looming, we checked up on when, and where, taxes are being submitted. Here’s what we found:

Get Started with Square Payroll

Payroll processing trusted by thousands.

A procrastination nation

Across the U.S., the busiest day to file taxes is the Friday before the deadline. The rate of submissions during the final week to file taxes outpaces other weeks by more than 2.5 times. The following Monday and the deadline itself follow as the busiest days to file. By and large, Americans are waiting until the last minute to file.

Early birds vs. procrastinators

We see people file during two distinct weeks at the beginning of the year: the third week in February and the second week in April. This captures two distinct groups: the early birds, who like to get their taxes done ahead of time, and the procrastinators, who file just before the deadline.

And when it comes to taxes, it turns out some states are more — ahem — proactive than others.

Tax prep state by state

Early-bird states

early bird states
The states that see an early sales peak in tax preparation in February.

  • Ohio (peaks earliest)
  • Kentucky
  • Massachusetts
  • Alabama
  • Washington

Procrastinator states

procrastinator states

The states whose sales in tax preparation jump just before or on the April deadline.

  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • California
  • Virginia
  • New Jersey

Whether you’re just finishing up your taxes for the year, or you’re already preparing for your 2019 return, we can help.

Square Payroll makes it easy and affordable to pay your employees or contractors (or both) online in just a few clicks. The tool automatically handles your tax filings by withholding state and federal taxes from employee wages and making payments to the IRS and state tax agencies on your behalf. (Think how much simpler tax season will be next year!)

Square Payroll also files new-hire reports and prepares, files, and mails W-2 and 1099 forms to your employees and contractors. Whether you pay employees or contractors, or your team works on salary, commissions, or hourly rates, we’ve got you (and your taxes) covered.

Square also connects with your favorite accounting and tax software, so you don’t have to manually transcribe any of your sales or employee data.

Data based on Square seller transactions across the U.S. from January 2018–April 2018