If you’re wondering why you’re getting a W-2c this tax season, you might have the COVID-19 pandemic to blame. W-2c forms are sent out whenever employers need to correct information on employees’ W-2 forms. This year, some employers didn’t understand the requirements for reporting wages paid for leave under the FFCRA (Families First Coronavirus Response Act), according to SHRM.
Robert Delgado, principal-in-charge of compensation and benefits with KPMG, told SHRM that instructions for reporting those wages were included in IRS Notice 2020-54 but not in the Form W-2 instructions, likely because of “the short-term nature of the program.”
That said, W-2c forms are fairly commonplace, and it usually isn't hard for tax preparers or even tax DIYers to handle them.
Why did I get a W-2c?
According to Zenefits, a W-2c is a corrected wage and tax statement that the IRS requires to correct information previously reported on for W-2. The incorrect information might be a typo, or it might be a miscalculated amount, so employees can get corrected W-2 forms for any number of reasons.
W-2s for a given tax year won' reflect any corrections completed after Dec. 31 of that year. So, once any such correction is completed, a W-2c will be sent to the employee and filed with the Social Security Administration.
How long does it take to get a W-2c?
The timing of the W-2c’s arrival in your inbox depends on when your employer makes the correction. H&R Block recommends that you request that an IRS representative start a Form W-2 complaint with your employer if you are aware of incorrect information on your W-2 and you haven't received a W-2c by the end of February after the tax year in question.
What to do after receiving a W-2c
According to Intuit, if you’ve already used the information from the incorrect W-2 but you haven’t filed your tax return yet, enter the corrected info from the W-2 into your tax return.
If you’ve already mailed your return or if the government has accepted your e-filed return, you can amend your return by filing a new form called 1040X. Intuit says that you’ll need to make an amendment if the corrected information changes the refund or tax due amount.
You can still e-file with a W-2c
According to TaxAct, you can still e-file your tax return if you’ve received a W-2c. You’ll just enter the W-2c information as if it’s your original W-2 and file as normal. TaxAct adds that you don’t need to send the W-2c form along with your e-file since your employer will send a copy of the W-2c to the IRS.