No, you are not required to pay estimated taxes, especially if you do not think you will owe income tax. We'll automatically include four quarterly 1040-ES vouchers with your printout if you didn't withhold or pay enough tax this year. We do this to head off a possible underpayment penalty on next year's taxes.
You may get these vouchers if you're self-employed or had an uncharacteristic spike in your income this year (like you described above). For example, you sold stock or took a large distribution from your retirement plan.
You're not required to make estimated tax payments; we're just suggesting it based on the info in your return. If you feel they're not needed for next year's taxes, you can shred them.
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Ok...thanks for the info.
Here's another question. For 2021, now I may incur larger income due to liquidation of some stock. My income wont be as large as it was for 2020. I suspect it will be 1/2 of the increase that I had for 2020. I was wondering if I use the estimated tax stubs but may be only the 1st and 2nd payment vouchers, would that be ok? My 4 vouchers equate to about 10K but I was thinking of using 2 of the vouchers to pay 5K. Does this create a bigger problem?
It won't create any problems at all, since that approximate amounts anyway. If you want to use two of the four estimate vouchers, you might spread the payment and use the first and the last ones.