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How to Get W-2 Online and Fill It Out?

Still wondering ‘how to get my W-2 online’? Being officially employed comes with a lot of bureaucracy, which is as perplexing as necessary. For each yearly tax return, an employer and employee must handle several forms, like W-2, 1099, 1040, etc., to reflect on their income. Let’s take a thorough look at W-2 and what to do with it to file your taxes correctly.

What Is a W-2 Form and Where to Get It?

Main page of W-2 Form opened in PDFliner
Also referred to as the Wage and Tax Statement, Form W-2 is issued by the IRS to monitor and collect data about your income and taxes. Yearly, an employer is to send the document to each full-time employee to juxtapose the employee’s income information with their records. Moreover, it shows the number of taxes, which were subtracted from the previous year’s income to submit this information to the Social Security Administration.

While the purpose and procedures of W-2 are clear, the whole sending-and-receiving process is complicated. The document is obtained by an employer to be sent to an employee. After that, the employee sends it to the employer who submits it to the SSA. Finally, the form goes back to the IRS.

How to Read a W-2?

Although many people wonder how to file for taxes without W-2, it’s practically impossible if you are a registered worker. The form itself consists of essential information for your taxation and binds you to your current employer. However, don’t be overwhelmed since the form itself is not as complex as, for instance, Form 1040.

With the document consisting of copies A, B, and 1, the former is used strictly for displaying what the original form includes. It’s done to prevent people from confusing similar forms or misstepping while filing. Meanwhile, Copy B is meant for filling out by an employee and can be handled online if you know how to access W-2 online.

Finally, Copy 1 is an optional form with the same requirements and information. It’s used as a counterpart for submitting it to other authorized bodies or simply sending it to the employer for keeping.

The first thing you need is the employer’s business information to facilitate identification. Their SSN, EIN, and address, as well as the name and control number, are provided by the employer or even filed by themselves. Next comes your tax information. If you know how to get a W-2 from an old job, then completing and calculating your overall income and withheld taxes should be easier. At the end of the form, there are fields for state and local income and taxes to add.

How to Fill Out a W-2 Form?

Upon collecting all the necessary information, you need to get the form. Normally, the employer will send you one by Jan 31 so that you can complete the document in the following two months. By now, it should be clear to you how to get W-2 from the IRS if your employer hasn’t provided it for you, which is by accessing the IRS’s official website and downloading it. Then, do the following:
1. File fields a-f with the employer’s business information. Indicate the SSN, EIN, name, and address. Also, add the company control number, which is an article in which this W-2 form is registered in the employer’s accounting records.

2. Fields 1,3,5,7 require your income information (wages, salaries, tips, etc.), whereas the opposite 2,4,6,8 fields collect your tax information on the income.

3. Use fields 9-14 to state your medicare, benefits, and paid compensations.

4. In fields 15-20, you have to indicate income taxes both for your state and local income. It’s very important to file both accordingly since your tax return depends on them.
W-2 Form opened in PDFliner

How to File W-2?

After completing the form and checking it for errors, you have to submit it to the IRS and send a copy to the employer. The IRS uses this information to determine your entitlement to certain benefits and calculate your overall tax obligation. If the office finds that you have overpaid your standard income tax obligations, you will be notified. Consequently, you may file for a refund with your next tax return if you are aware of how to get a previous year’s W-2 form.

The due time for handling the form is strict. The employer is to send a copy to fill out by Jan 31 of the current year. While you complete the form for your past year’s income and taxes, you have exactly 2 months to finish and submit it. With Apr 15 as the deadline, the IRS has to receive it timely to proceed with your tax return.

In case you fail to do so, there will be penalties. If your delay is minor, and the form is submitted in the following month, the penalty amounts to $50. Otherwise, the total penalty can exceed $500,000 yearly.


Do you have any other questions related to how to get an old W-2 form or its completion? Take a look here!
How to get a copy of a W-2?
A copy of the form is normally sent to you by the employer if your annual earnings are over $600. If not, you can download it from the IRS’s official website (see how to get your W-2 online). 
Who has to file W-2?

The form is filed by an employee to show their official income and income taxes. While the form is mostly completed by a worker, some information is to be provided by the employer, like the employer’s SSN, EIN, legal name, address, etc.
How to get W-2 from a previous employer?
The process of how to get a copy of W-2 fast by accessing your previous employment is rather easy. Simply contact your prior employer’s HR department and request the form.
How to find AGI on W-2?
There is no AGI on your W-2 simply because you calculate your Adjusted Gross Income by using the W-2 amounts as a component. You AGI is normally located on your 1040.
How to get a lost W-2 from previous years?
In case of a loss or misstepping, W-2 can always be accessed through the IRS itself. By writing an official statement about your inability to obtain a copy from your previous employment place, you can be provided with one from the IRS’s archive.
How to generate W-2 forms?
To simplify filing Form W-2, you can always use digital generators that know how to get W-2 online and fill it out automatically. All you need to do is provide the platform with the requested information. The generator will analyze your data, make amends, and send the complete form to the IRS.
How to get Walmart W-2?
By Jan 31, Walmart publishes a copy of the W-2 form to be filed by the store’s employees. It will be sent to your official employee’s account automatically, or you can download it yourself if you are aware of how to find W-2 online. Either way, the form is completely the same for both cases.
How to find an employer identification number without W-2?
Normally, W-2 is one of those few forms which require your employer’s ID. EINs are not open to the public since they can be misused for fraudulent purposes. If you can find an old W-2 to access the EIN, all you are left to do is contact the company’s HR department directly.

Printable blank W-2 Form