New January 31 Deadline for Employers Filing Form W-2 and 1099

The Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes (PATH) Act, enacted last December, accelerated the Form W-2 and Form 1099-Misc filing deadline to January 31. Employers previously had until the end of February for paper filings and the end of March to submit electronic W-2 filings to the Social Security Administration and 1099s to the IRS. The new deadline intends to increase the detection and prevention of tax refund fraud. Employers, especially small businesses, need to take note and adjust payroll processes as needed in preparation for tax season.

The new accelerated deadline will help the IRS improve its efforts to spot errors on returns filed by taxpayers. Receiving W-2s and 1099s earlier will make it easier for the IRS to verify the legitimacy of tax returns and properly issue refunds to taxpayers eligible to receive them. In many instances, this will enable the IRS to release tax refunds more quickly than in the past.

The Jan. 31 deadline has long applied to employers supplying copies of these forms to employees and that date remains unchanged.

Read the IR-2016-143 notice for more information, or contact an Anders advisor if you have any questions on how the new deadline will affect your business.