IRS Reminds Employers of February Wage Statement Deadline

The Internal Revenue Service is reminding tax professionals and taxpayers that employers need to file Form W-2 and other wage statements by Feb. 1, 2021.

The February deadline is also the date employers must get wage statements to their employees.

The timetable is set by law

Employers are required by law 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 this year is the next business day, which happens to be Monday, Feb. 1.

Other forms are due on the Feb. 1 date as well. Form 1099-MISC, Miscellaneous Income, and Form 1099-NEC, Non-employee Compensation, are also due to recipients by the Feb.1 date – with some exceptions.

For other due dates that are related to Form 1099, check out the form’s instructions.

Filing fights fraud

Employers who file their wage statements on time help not only themselves, but the IRS as well. The employer avoids late-filing penalties, and the IRS has time to verify the income taxpayers report on their tax returns, which helps prevent fraud.

As far as filing is concerned, e-filing is the most accurate and convenient way to send the forms to the IRS – by far. In fact, those employers who file 250 or more such information returns in a single calendar year must transmit their filings electronically.

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:

  • Names
  • Addresses
  • 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.

It should be noted that are no automatic extensions of time to file Forms W-2. The IRS will only grant extensions for very specific reasons.

Employers should read the instructions for Form 8809, Application for Extension of Time to File Information Returns, for more information.

Source: Tax Tip 2021-01

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