When you’re doing your income taxes, you will require a number of forms and probably the most significant one is the W2 form.
Every business that you were employed at in the course of the previous year is liable for supplying you with a W-2, which must be sent by January 31 of the current year. You may be able to get yours sooner online
How to Get Your W2 Form Online
Many Employers are making their W-2 forms accessible on the internet since it makes submitting income taxes quicker and less complicated.
Once you get your W2 you have the option to begin filing online or download and print out your W-2 so it can be included with your tax return.
TurboTax Online will find and access your W2, which allows you to file your taxes as soon as you are ready. This year you can get your W2 easier than ever before! Just follow the TurboTax screens as it guides you to finding your W2 online.
Millions of employers and financial institutions participate so the odds are good your W2 will be available to download. You save time by doing so and it ensures that your information is delivered accurately.
H&R Block Online will also find and access your W2. When using an online based company like H&R Block, you will have the capability to get your W2 data online. You won’t have to wait for your forms to come in the mail.
The TurboTax and H&R Block search page
What is a W-2 Tax Form?
A W2 is a tax form that documents money paid to you, and money withheld from your paycheck. It includes your commissions, tips, wages, and the taxes that were withheld from your income for federal, state, and social security purposes.
This document has all of the information that you will need to fill out the financial information for your personal taxes. If you have worked, the IRS requires that you use your W-2 to file, and then they determine the amount of taxes that you should pay the federal and state governments.
When Do W2s Come Out?
In order to file your income taxes and get your tax refund, you have to have your W2. This form contains all of the important information that you need for your annual income tax filing.
The IRS mandates that employers have to send out or make W2’s available to their employees by January 31. Even if you switched jobs, they still have this deadline in place yet sometimes you can expect to receive it earlier. Your former employer will also include your accumulated vacation, severance, and outstanding bonuses on your W-2 form.
If you do not have your W-2 form by the end of January, confirm that your employer has your correct mailing address. If you don’t receive the W-2 from your employer by Valentine’s Day, contact the IRS at 800-829-1040 and provide them with your details so they can find your information.
Before calling them, make sure you are prepared to provide them with your name, mailing address, phone number, social security number, employers name and address, and the dates that you were employed
The IRS will accept returns without W2’s; however, this could delay your refund. The IRS has to make sure that your income is accurate and matches their records before they can issue you a tax refund.
Who Can Get Their W2 Online?
Many companies, including the military, have their employees W-2’s available online. The documents can be downloaded via a variety of outsourcing companies so the distribution process of the W-2’s are automated. Your employer should alert you as to whether or not you will be able to access your W2 online.
If they do allow you to access it online, you will get the benefit of being able to file your taxes earlier in addition to not waiting for paper copies, and eliminating the security risks that come along with having that information sitting around on paper.
What to Do if You Can’t Find Your W-2 Form
The W 2 form is usually mailed to you or made accessible online by the company you work for. If the form is lost, missing or you can’t find it online, contact your employer immediately. It’s a good idea to call the IRS if you don’t receive the W2 by mid-February.
In the worst case scenario, you can fill out Form 4852 and attach it to your tax return. The substitute wage and tax statement allows you to input the same details. A tax extension is another possibility, and buys you more time.
Your best bet is to file on time. If the W-2 arrives later, and the information is different from your estimates provided, Form 1040X can be filled out to correct any discrepancies, and amend the previous year’s tax return.
Getting Multiple W-2s from the Same Employer with Different Amounts
Usually, if you have multiple W2s from the same employer, with different amounts you need to enter all of them. Turbo Tax or H&R Block can help you get all of the W-2s entered and will calculate the combined income. You may have to file multiple W-2s if any of the following situations apply to you:
- You worked for a temporary agency that sent you on different jobs. This will cause you to have multiple W-2s with different amounts but the same Employer Identification Number.
- Your employer changes their payroll or placement agency who is responsible for your pay
- Your employer was purchased or merged with another company
- Different divisions of your company paid you. In this case the Employer Identification Numbers will differ
- Your employer reports additional compensation, such as reimbursement for employment business expenses
In the event that all of the Employment Identification Numbers, addresses, and names are the same you may want to contact the payroll department to see why the W-2s were issued like this. If it is a payroll error, you will have to get a correct W-2.
How to Get Prior Years W2s
If you file a prior year tax return, there may be complications such as missing W-2’s and other forms. You can still get a copy of that form. To receive a copy of a prior year W-2, there are a couple of possibilities.
Contacting the issuer is the easiest way to find that particular W2. Employer payroll departments save such important documents that contain tax information. You can simply contact them and ask for the form to be sent to your address. This is usually best way.
You can also contact the IRS directly. If you can’t get in touch with that employer, then you will need form 4506. Although it may take longer and cost you some money, this allows you to obtain the copy of that year’s W-2 rather than do nothing.
It’s important to note the IRS holds past W-2’s and other tax documents for 7-10 years. They’re filed under each taxpayer’s social security number. You can ask for a W-2, but not until a year after it was filed, and form 4506 will be required to get a copy thereafter. Also note:
- The IRS charges a $57 service fee; checks are paid to “The United States Treasury”.
- Check the second page of form 4506 for the address to send it to.
- It takes the IRS up to two months to process the request and send the W-2.
Contacting a current or former employer is the easiest way to get a prior W-2. The IRS is the next alternative if you can’t contact the employer or you do not wish to contact them again.