Previously, while recipient copies had to be provided by the end of January, employers had until the end of February to actually file them with IRS. No more.
And this deadline is the same regardless of whether you are a paper filer or an e-filer.
This change makes sense; the IRS should have copies of these forms on file so that wage amounts can be verified sooner rather than later, and hopefully this will also lead to faster tax return processing.
Most of our users would typically file these forms by the end of January anyway; the only reason to wait historically would be perhaps to get recipient feedback in the event of any problems or errors. Because the filing deadline has been moved up and for this reason, it will behoove users to get their recipient copies out to end users as soon as possible in January to the extent that may be a concern (perhaps at least by January 15).
More information about this new deadline:
Note that in some states, paper (where accepted) as well e-filing deadlines may still be later than January 31.
What's ahead for year end and into 2017 with respect to payroll? We'll be posting more information on this topic as it develops, but here are a few sneak peeks:
- 2016 W-2 forms will not be changing - forms can be ordered from Dynamic Systems, our forms provider, or they can be printed for you via our e-filing portal.
- The same e-filing interface we developed at the end of 2015 has been re-tested with our e-filing partner and those tests were accepted on Novemer 28, 2016. They will be opening that portal to accept filings for 2016 as early as December 7. If you are in a state that has an e-filing requirement or you simply want to e-file, or you want our e-feiling provider to print the W-2 forms (employee copies) for you, be sure that you have that update. More information.
- The social security tax wage limit will be increasing (unlike last year) from $118,500 to $127,200, and that will be one of the changes you will be making in your payroll division setup after your last 2016 payroll and after the PR-G option has been run (simply choose the option "Clear employees/process W-2s later" and then return to PR-G later when you are ready to print forms and/or e-file) and prior to your first 2017 payroll. More information.