Employers must file Form W-2 and other wage statements by Monday, Feb. 1, 2021. This is also the date Form W-2s are due to employees.
By law, employers are required to file copies of their Form W-2, Wage and Tax Statement, and Form W-3, Transmittal of Wage and Tax Statements, with the Social Security Administration by Jan. 31. However, since Jan. 31 falls on a Sunday in 2021, the deadline is the next business day, Monday, Feb. 1, according to the IRS.
Form 1099-MISC, Miscellaneous Income and Form 1099-NEC, Nonemployee Compensation, are also due to recipients on February 1, 2021, with some exceptions. Other due dates related to Form 1099 are listed in the instructions for these forms PDF.
Timely filing Helps Prevent Fraud
Filing wage statements on time and without errors is beneficial to employers and the IRS. The employer avoids penalties, and the IRS has time to verify income taxpayers report on their tax returns, which helps prevent fraud.
E-file is the quickest, most accurate and convenient way to file these forms. The law requires certain filers who file 250 or more information returns for any calendar year to file electronically.
Employers Should Plan and Prepare Early
Good preparation now can help employers avoid problems later. For instance, employers can start by verifying or updating employee information, such as:
- Social Security numbers
- Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers
Employers should be sure their account information is current and active with the Social Security Administration as soon as possible. Lastly, employers should order paper Form W-2s, if needed, according to the IRS.
Automatic extensions of time to file Form W-2s are not available. The IRS will only grant extensions for very specific reasons. For details, employers should read the instructions for Form 8809, Application for Extension of Time to File Information Returns.
Form W-2 and W-3 instructions PDF
Every Taxpayer Has Right to Challenge IRS’s Position and Be Heard
Taxpayers have the right to challenge the IRS’s position and be heard. This is part of Taxpayer Bill of Rights, which clearly outlines the fundamental rights every taxpayer has when working with the IRS.
Taxpayers Have the Right To:
- Raise objections.
- Provide additional documentation in response to formal or proposed IRS actions.
- Expect the IRS to consider their objections timely.
- Have the IRS consider any supporting documentation promptly.
- Receive a response if the IRS does not agree with their position.
Here are Some Specific Things the Right to Challenge the IRS’s Position and Be Heard Affords Taxpayers:
- In some cases, the IRS will notify a taxpayer that their tax return has a mathematical or clerical error. If this happens, the taxpayer:
- Has 60 days to tell the IRS that they disagree.
- Should provide copies of any records that may help correct the error.
- May call the number listed on the letter or bill for assistance.
- Can expect the agency to make the necessary adjustment to their account and send a correction if the IRS upholds the taxpayer’s position.
- Here’s what will happen if the IRS does not agree with the taxpayer’s position:
- The agency will issue a notice proposing a tax adjustment. This is a letter that comes in the mail.
- This notice provides the taxpayer with a right to challenge the proposed adjustment.
- The taxpayer makes this challenge by filing a petition in U.S. Tax Court. The taxpayer must generally file the petition within 90 days of the date of the notice, or 150 days if it is addressed outside the United States.
- Taxpayers can submit documentation and raise objections during an audit. If the IRS does not agree with the taxpayer’s position, the agency issues a notice explaining why it is increasing the tax. Prior to paying the tax, the taxpayer has the right to petition the U.S. Tax Court and challenge the agency’s decision.
- In some circumstances, the IRS must provide a taxpayer with an opportunity for a hearing before an independent Office of Appeals. The agency must do this:
- Before taking enforcement action to collect a tax debt. These actions include levying the taxpayer’s bank account.Immediately after filing a notice of federal tax lien in the appropriate state filing location. If the taxpayer disagrees with the decision of the Appeals Office, they can petition the U.S. Tax Court, all this according to the IRS.
- Publication 556, Examination of Returns, Appeal Rights, and Claims for Refund
- Publication 1, Your Rights as a Taxpayer