What to Do if You Didn’t Get a W-2 from Your Employer

What to do if employer doesn't send w2 on timeThis is a great addition to the post a few weeks ago called: Professional Nannies & Tax Time also from Breedlove & Associates.

If you didn’t get a Form W-2 from the family you worked for in 2010, here are the appropriate steps to follow:

  1. Ask your employer(s) if the W-2 is on its way and verify they have your correct address. The IRS asks employers to mail the W-2 by January 31. It’s possible that it’s in the mail or was accidentally sent to the wrong address. It’s also possible that your employer has every intention of preparing your W-2 but just missed the deadline.
  2. If the family won’t provide a Form W-2, remind the family that failing to handle the “nanny tax” obligations is extremely risky (felony tax evasion with expensive penalties). They probably have a misconception that the employer’s taxes will be very expensive – it’s worth letting them know that tax breaks for childcare expenses can offset most – if not all – of their employer tax costs. Additionally, if they don’t pay, you don’t get financial benefits and protections, such as social security, medicare, unemployment, etc.

Note: If the family tries to give you a Form 1099 instead of a W-2, remind them that this form is for independent contractors only. The IRS has ruled definitively that you should be classified as an employee – misclassifying you as an independent contractor is considered tax evasion. This is important to you financially because independent contractors have to pay the entire FICA tax liability (15.3%) whereas employees only have to pay half (7.65%). Allowing the family to make this mistake can cost you several thousand dollars per year!

  1. If you still don’t get a W-2 from your family prior to the April 15 tax reporting deadline, you’ll be forced to file Form 4852, Substitute for From W-2. The IRS instructions are available here: http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=106470,00.html

If you have any questions or concerns during this process, just give us a toll free call at 888-BREEDLOVE (888-273-3356). We’re here to help.

what to do if employer doesn't send w2 on time

  • What to do if employer doesn't send w2 on time

Just like the holiday season, the tax season is slowly creeping up on us, and we should be prepared. The form that most people care about is the Form W-2, which has an annual January 31st due date. If you’re someone who fills them out every year, but don’t necessarily know what they mean, we’ve created a little guide to help you out!

W-2 forms display the amount of taxes withheld from your paycheck each year. They’re used to file your federal and state taxes. Here are the basics:

  • W-2 Wages And Withholding: First of all, you should only receive a W-2 if you’re an employee. If you are an independent contractor, you may be completing the same work as an employee but your earnings statement will be on a Form 1099 (we’ll cover that in an upcoming post).
  • Verifying Your Name And Social Security Number: Make sure that the income you report matches the information on your W-2. If it doesn’t, the IRS will want to know why. Above all, if the name or Social Security number on your W-2 is inaccurate, you should immediately report this to your employer to correct the errors.
  • Attaching Your W-2: Don’t forget to attach a copy of your W-2 when you’re getting ready to file your tax returns (it’s mandatory).

Whether you’re old school and like pen and paper or prefer the convenience of technology, there are two filing options for you to chose from.

If you think you haven’t received a tax form by the due date, here’s what to do:

  1. Double-check all email and physical mail
  2. Sign in to your payroll provider’s website (e.g. ADP) and check for any correspondence
  3. Check with your employer to ensure the address on file is correct (or else it could’ve been sent somewhere else)

If you still can’t find it, talk to an HR representative at your company and try to figure it out. If you’re still having issues or if the company is out of business, contact the IRS.

If we could leave you with one last bit of advice, don’t file your tax returns until you’ve received your tax reporting forms, especially when the IRS prohibits tax preparers from submitting electronic returns prior to the receipt. Be patient. Even if you think you know what’s on those forms, you don’t want to risk the problems it may cause if your numbers are off.