Your W-2 form is the official income statement your employer sends the IRS. You use it to file your federal and state income taxes, and you can also use it to prove your income to a lender or other entity for any given year. Each year, your employer is required to get you your W-2 form by no later than February 1 so you can file your taxes. But if you find yourself waiting on your W-2 after the February deadline, then there is a way to retrieve your W-2 online for free. You can also get your W-2 for free for past years if you ever need it.
<h3>Getting Your W-2 From The IRS</h3>
Your W-2 is first sent to the Social Security Administration (SSA), where it is processed in anticipation of your federal tax filing. After the SSA is done processing your W-2, it is then sent to the IRS. You can get a free copy of your <a href=”https://www.irs.gov/faqs/irs-procedures/copies-transcripts/transcript-or-copy-of-form-w-2″>current year’s W-2 from the IRS</a> after July of that year if you fill out the proper form and send it back to the IRS.
If you need your W-2 from previous years, then you can fill out the form and send it back to the IRS. But this will only apply to people who sent in their paper W-2 with their federal income tax filing. If you did not send in a paper W-2 with your filing, then you can fill out a form to get a summary of your tax filing to the IRS which will include your W-2 information, but not your actual W-2.
<h3>Getting Your W-2 From The Social Security (SSA) Administration</h3>
The <a href=”https://faq.ssa.gov/link/portal/34011/34019/Article/3836/How-can-I-get-a-copy-of-my-wage-and-tax-statements-Form”>SSA can provide you with a copy of your current year’s W-2</a> for free, provided you need it for a Social Security related issue. The SSA considers the primary non-Social Security related issues to be:
<li>Needed to file your current year’s tax return</li>
<li>Establishing income for a workers’ compensation incident</li>
<li>Establishing access to a pension fund</li>
If you are trying to establish a Social Security claim or are filing papers for other Social Security related reasons, then you can get your W-2 for free. If you are trying to get your W-2 for non-social security related reasons, then the fee as of 2018 for one W-2 is $86.00.
The easiest way to get your current year’s W-2 is to get it through your employer. Some employers offer secure websites where employees can access their W-2 forms whenever they want, while other companies still prefer to mail out one copy in January. If you need your W-2 form and cannot get a copy from your employer, then there are ways you can get your W-2 for free online.
Jim Treebold is a North Carolina based writer. He lives by the mantra of “Learn 1 new thing each day”! Jim loves to write, read, pedal around on his electric bike and dream of big things. Drop him a line if you like his writing, he loves hearing from his readers!