The Maryland State Department of Assessments and Taxation (SDAT) is streamlining the annual
business filing process in Maryland by updating the paperwork all entities are required to file with the
state. The current “Form 1” will be separated into an “Annual Report” and a “Personal Property Tax
Return,” which more clearly distinguishes the dual purposes of this filing. The majority of Maryland entities
do not have personal property and will not be required to complete that section. Additionally, three forms
that pertain only to entities with personal property will also be eliminated, simplifying the filing process and
reducing the amount of paperwork to be completed by most Maryland business owners.
Changes to the Annual Report and Personal Property Tax Return – “Form 1”
Beginning in 2018, the Department will be separating the Annual Report and Personal Property Tax
Return filings, which historically have been combined in Form 1. All business entities will still be required
to file a two-page Annual Report, and directions within that document will determine whether or not they
must also attach a Personal Property Tax Return. The majority of business owners—roughly 200,000—
do not actually own any personal property and will not be required to complete that section. A Personal
Property Tax Return must be included if:
The business owns, leases, or uses personal property located in Maryland; or
The business maintains a trader’s license with a local unit of government in Maryland.
Although the form is being revised and streamlined, the methods for filing will not change. The simplest
and easiest method is through Maryland Business Express (MBE), SDAT’s award-winning platform for
creating a business, making annual filings, and requesting document copies online. MBE will be updated
with the revised form in January. As customers answer the prompts in filing their Annual Report
electronically, MBE will automatically identify whether a Personal Property Tax Return should also be
completed. Otherwise, business owners may continue to submit their Annual Report and Personal
Property Tax Returns by mail, or file in person at our West Preston Street office in Baltimore City.
Additional Changes for Entities with Personal Property
Three forms that pertain only to entities with personal property will also be eliminated beginning in 2018.
These forms are too detailed and rigid for filers to easily submit information, and any information relevant
to the Personal Property Tax Return can still be submitted as an attachment and may be requested by
our Department. The three forms to be eliminated are:
Form 4A Balance Sheet,
Form 4B Depreciation Schedule, and
Form 4C Disposal & Transfer Reconciliation.