Taxes are a headache for most people, but when you are one of the unlucky Americans who will not receive their Form W-2 this year from their employer then taxes can become an unbearable migraine. While dealing with a missing W-2 will be more difficult than if your employer sent it out like they were supposed to, it does not mean that tax evasion or giving up on your return this year are your only options.
Not Sure? Go Ask!
There are multiple avenues for people in your situation to pursue to file taxes legally and eventually receive the long awaited tax return. Frist and foremost, if you are worried that your employer has not sent out your W-2, go ask.
Head down to your employer’s payroll office or ask for contact information to the payroll office if such things are outsourced by your company, and request that they send you your W-2. Chances are that they are simply late getting the forms in the mail or they have the wrong address on your record.
Check the Address
Be sure to inform them of your current address or an address you will be able to safely receive the form in the mail and if they have already sent out your W-2 to an old or incorrect address you may have to do some hunting. Simply go to the address where they sent the W-2 and ask if the current residents have spotted it in the mail; because, more often than not, when people see the words “important tax information enclosed” and it is not addressed to them they are smart enough and kind enough to hold on to it or return it to the sender.
Filing Tax Returns Without a W-2
So, here is the scenario: you have done all you can on your end to get your employer to send a replacement W-2 (or maybe just the original form if they are super late in getting them out), and you still do not have the form, which means you cannot file for a return, which means you will not get a return. Are you simply stuck at this point? NO!
Should all else fail and traditional methods of receiving your W-2 from your employer have bombed (i.e. they are no longer in business, have filed bankruptcy, or simply are not getting you your tax forms to you) then there are still actions you can take. First, alert the IRS that you have not been able to receive your W-2 and they will walk you through the process of how to proceed (along with sending your employer a friendly reminder from the federal government to get with the program); to do this you will need information from your last paystub including your wages, deducted taxes, Social Security and Medicare taxes paid from your earnings, your company’s name, address, and employer identification number.
The IRS will also send you a Form 4852, which is a substitute for Form W-2 and will allow you to file your tax return even without the standard W-2. If contacting the IRS about your problem becomes itself a major issue (as contacting any federal agency can be pain) then you can go straight to the IRS website and download Form 4852 for yourself.
When filling out a 4852 you will need all the information that would have been on your W-2, generally found on old paystubs, as well as additional information outlining why you are filing with a 4852 instead of a W-2. While the entire process is made easier with a W-2 in hand, those who find themselves stuck without their W-2 still have options. To learn more about how to deal with a missing W-2, contact your local tax experts at Check City.