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Context: I've heard from a couple people that if you owe a significant amount of taxes to the IRS (say several thousand dollars) at tax time, then the IRS will require you to start paying future taxes in quarterly amounts. Interestingly, this requirement was not mentioned when I did my taxes via TurboTax, despite owing quite a bit.

Question: Must I pay quarterly in the future, or is the quarterly payment plan only an option? (and FWIW, I've adjusted my W4 so this doesn't happen again).

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The requirement to pay estimate taxes is if you owe $1000 or more in taxes per year. Withholding from your paycheck counts towards that payment, that is why people who are W2 employees don't actually need to file quarterly estimates.

Yes, adjusting your W4 is the right way to go.

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