What to Do If You Don’t Have Your W2 Form

Tax season is upon us, and with the tax deadline fast approaching, U.S. taxpayers are feverishly getting all their documents together so they can file their tax returns on time.

lost w2 form

But the important W2, a transcript of your wages, and a crucial record of payroll details, is missing, or maybe you haven’t received it yet; what should you do?

No need to panic; there is a way for individuals to get their missing W-2 form online.

Table of Contents

What to Do If You Lost Your W2 Form

The W-2 form is a vital piece of info for most tax filers as it confirms the income and amounts you earned for that tax year.

Sometimes known as the Wage and Tax Statement, employers in the business sector send W2s out at the beginning of every calendar year.

These businesses, by law, have to mail the W2 forms with an employer identification number by January 31 so that filers have sufficient time to submit their taxes by the April 15 deadline for tax filing.

Your employer also has to send a copy of your W-2 straight to the IRS.

What if you don’t have your W-2 form? What should you do next?

As per the IRS and its requirements, you have a few options to think about:

1. Try to Get Your Missing W2 Online

You may be able to get your missing W2 form online using the W-2 Finder service at TurboTax.

The W2 Finder is a convenient and secure online tool that allows you to obtain a copy of your W-2 form from previous years if you have lost or misplaced it.

2. Contact Your Employer

If you can't find your W-2 for whatever reason, you can still contact your employer through their HR department and request a new one to be mailed to you.

For example, it could have been returned to your employer because of a wrong or incomplete address.

Additionally, employees should ensure their account information is up-to-date to avoid potential penalties.

3. Contact the IRS Directly

You also have the option of getting in contact with the  IRS  directly.

If you don’t get it by February 14, the IRS suggests contacting them TOLL-FREE at 1-800-829-1040.

When you call, be sure to have handy your name, address including city, state, zip code, your Social Security number, and phone number, as well as the following information related to your employment:

  • Full name, address, and phone number of your employer
  • Period of employment
  • Estimated income earned, federal income tax withheld along with dates you worked for the employer. You can get all of this info from your pay stub, but looking at the year-to-date information.

Once you contact the IRS directly for your missing W2, they might get the form sent to them by your employer. Then, hopefully, you will get it in time to file your taxes on time.

The Social Security Administration also offers assistance in obtaining tax information and transcripts.

In the meantime, keep copies of payment records and other relevant documents, like your Medicare deductions, as evidence of your earned money.

4. File Your Return Without The W2

It doesn’t matter if you have your W2 or not. According to the IRS, you still have to file your tax return or request a tax extension by April 15.

However, in a case where you already contacted the IRS regarding your missing W-2, they will get you to complete Form 4852, which will function as a Form W2.

The Form 4825 will have to be attached to your Form 1040, where you will have to estimate income as well as withholding taxes as precisely as possible.

The IRS states that going this route might delay your refund because they will have to take extra time to verify the info you sent them.

If you get your W2 after submitting your return using Form 4852 and you notice that your earnings or taxes are withheld are incorrect, you can amend the tax return.

You can make the amendment by filling out Form 1040X, Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return, or you can contact the IRS directly with the correct info.

How to Get Your W-2 Online

You might still be able to get your W2 data electronically if, for whatever reason, it didn’t work out with your employer or the IRS.

The authorized IRS e-file provider TurboTax provides a free W-2 form finder as well as other services to help you locate and import your W-2 online.

These tax software options can also help identify tax deductions and organize your tax preparation.

Depending on the availability of these documents from your financial institution and employer, this feature will allow you to find and import your W2 online.

Be sure to have important information, such as your job and employer details on hand.