Calling Employees: This is for YOU!

irs tax auditYou are required to attach your W2 to your tax return when you file this important once-a-year tax form. Every year you have the chance to  “look yourself in the eye” and sign your tax return under penalty of perjury that it is correct and accurate.
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If you don’t already have your W2 for 2014, you should be getting this important form very soon. Employers are required to issue their W2 forms by January 31st. Since 1/31 fell on a Saturday, that gave employers until the next business day, or February 2nd.
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Did you move since you were first employed? Does your employer have your correct current address?
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Did your employer go out of business during the year? Did they pay their accountant in advance to issue the year-end W2 forms? They probably did not.

On payday did you get a paystub showing the cumulative, or year-to-date income earned and taxes withheld? Did you keep track of these numbers yourself? Most people won’t but it is a good idea.

Did you have more than one job during the year? Do you have a W2 from EACH of your jobs? You must report your total income from all taxable sources. What can you do if you don’t have this required for filing form?

If you have not received your W2 by February 17th (because 2/14 is on Saturday and 2/16 is a holiday) , you can call the IRS for assistance. When you dial 1-800-829-1040, be prepared to wait on hold. It could be a VERY long wait. This is a toll-free number, the IRS gets a lot of callers AND they have had budget cuts that limit the number of assistors and hours available to work. (Really government?!).

The  assistor at the Internal Revenue Service will ask you for your name, your address with zip code and your social security number. Remember YOU called them. Do NOT EVER (NEVER!) give this confidential information to any one who calls you. Protect your identity.  IRS will also ask for your employer’s name, complete address, phone number and your dates of employment. IRS will contact your employer for you (if that is possible) and will request the missing form for you.

Form 4852, Substitute for W2, was designed for just this purpose. When you call the IRS to request their help, they will send you this form. There are blanks for you to fill in your wages and withholdings. It will ask you how you determined the amounts you are entering. It will also ask you to describe what you did to try to obtain your W2. But, you cannot file a return using this form until after April 15th.

If you did receive a W2, was it correct? If you think it was not correct, contact your employer and request a corrected W2, a W2-C.

If you filed your tax return using Form 4852 and then received a W2 or W2-C showing different amounts, then you must file Form 1040X to amend your return. This amendment may result in you owing more tax or it may result in you getting a refund. Consult your tax professional for help filing this more complicated form.

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