Why third-quarter taxes are confusing for small businesses in the Paycheck Protection Program

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Thomas Barwick | DigitalVision | Getty ImagesA key tax deadline is just around the corner, and small-business owners who are in distress are still uncertain of what they’ll owe the IRS.For taxpayers who pay quarterly estimated taxes, Sept. 15 marks the due date for this year’s third-quarter payment.As if that weren’t stressful enough, small businesses that took a forgivable loan through the Paycheck Protection Program still have no clue on how to treat certain business expenses that were covered by the loan.PPP loans, which were established by the CARES Act, require that at least 60% of the proceeds be applied toward a business’s payroll expenses to qualify for forgiveness.More from Personal Finance:At least 20 states start paying extra $300 weekly unemployment benefitThe CDC banned evictions, but some renters are still vulnerableStill haven’t filed your 2019 tax return? Penalties are about to get steeperHere’s the catch: While the IRS has said that the loan forgiveness itself is tax-free,  business expenses covered by the loan proceeds won’t be deductible.Members of Congress disagree with this finding and have sponsored legislation calling for the deductibility of those costs. Being unable to deduct the costs would make a  business’s income seem higher on paper, which could …

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