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Before you file your current year's tax return, you should make sure you have all necessary documents including Form W-2. You should receive a Form W-2 Wage and Tax Statement from each of your employers. Employers have until January 31, 2021 to send you a 2020 Form W-2 earnings statement.

If you haven’t received your W-2, follow these four steps:

  1. Contact your employer If you have not received your W-2, contact your employer to inquire if and when the W-2 was mailed. If it was mailed, it may have been returned to the employer because of an incorrect or incomplete address. After contacting the employer, allow a reasonable amount of time for them to resend or to issue the W-2.
  2. Contact the IRS If you do not receive your W-2 by February 15th, contact the IRS for assistance at 800-829-1040. When you call, you must provide your name, address, city and state (including zip code), Social Security Number, phone number, and have the following information ready to provide:
    • Employer’s name, address, city and state (including zip code), and phone number
    • Dates of employment
    • An estimate of the wages you earned, the federal income tax withheld, and when you worked for that employer during the tax year. The estimate should be based on year-to-date information from your final pay stub or leave-and-earnings statement, if possible.
  3. File your return You still must file your tax return or request an extension to file by April 15, 2021, even if you do not receive your Form W-2. If you have not received your Form W-2 by the due date and have completed steps 1 and 2, you may use Form 4852 Substitute for Form W-2, Wage and Tax Statement. Attach Form 4852 to the return, estimating income and withholding taxes as accurately as possible. There may be a delay in any refund due while the information is verified.
  4. File a Form 1040-X On occasion, you may receive your missing W-2 after you filed your return using Form 4852, and the information may be different from what you reported on your return. If this happens, you must amend your return by filing a Form 1040-X Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return.

Related Links

Note that any link in the information above is updated each year automatically and will take you to the most recent version of the document at the time it is accessed.


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