Important date changes have been announced for tax filing 2016 W-2s and 1099 forms. The IRS has set the federal filing deadline for January 31, 2017, instead of the traditional February 28 due to date.
The new earlier filing deadline is a result of a new federal law enacted last December that aims to make it easier for the IRS to detect and prevent refund fraud, and one of its measures includes an accelerated W-2 filing deadline.
Additionally, the IRS has increased the penalties for failing to file the correct forms by the due date, intentionally disregarding filing requirements, and failing to furnish W-2s to employees. The deadline for furnishing copies of these forms to employees is also January 31, 2017, which has been the tradition. Each employee must be provided with a Form W-2 and each independent contractor with a Form 1099-MISC (if they were paid $600 or more during the year).
While several states are following the IRS in moving up their deadlines, not all are. “States are free to establish any tax laws they want,” says Ira Smilovitz of Glenwood Tax Services. “While many will follow the IRS lead on due dates and other requirements, not all will.”
According to Smilovitz, “Many aspects of state taxation are encapsulated in state law. If the law specifies a date, it can only be changed by legislative action.” The following is a list of 2017 deadlines for filing 2016 W-2s for each state:
|Agency||January 31 Deadline||Other State Deadline|
|Alaska||The state does not require W-2 filings|
|Arizona||February 28 if filing by paper; March 31 if filing electronically|
|Arkansas||February 28 if filing by paper; March 31 if filing electronically|
|California||The state does not require W-2 filings|
|Florida||The state does not require W-2 filings|
|Hawaii||The state does not require W-2 filings|
|Kansas||February 28 if filing by paper; March 31 if filing electronically|
|Massachusetts||February 28 if filing by paper; March 31 if filing electronically|
|Michigan||February 28 if filing by paper; March 31 if filing electronically|
|Minnesota||February 28 if filing by paper; March 31 if filing electronically|
|Missouri||February 28 if filing by paper; March 31 if filing electronically|
|Montana||February 28 February 28 if filing by paper; March 31 if filing electronically|
|Nevada||The state does not require W-2 filings|
|New Hampshire||The state does not require W-2 filings|
|New Jersey||February 28 if filing by paper; March 31 if filing electronically|
|New Mexico||February 28 if filing by paper; March 31 if filing electronically|
|New York||The state does not require W-2 filings|
|South Dakota||The state does not require W-2 filings|
|Tennessee||The state does not require W-2 filings|
|Texas||The state does not require W-2 filings|
|Washington||The state does not require W-2 filings|
|West Virginia||February 28 if filing by paper; March 31 if filing electronically|
|Wyoming||The state does not require W-2 filings|
Why are states following the IRS lead and accelerating their filing deadlines to the new IRS date? According to Smilovitz, “As a practical matter, most employers and payroll processors will prepare and file their state documents at the same time as their federal ones, in part because some states allow them to piggy-back their state submission on the federal e-filing.”
In order to avoid penalties for late filing, it’s important to look up the rules in your state, says Deborah Sweeney, CEO of MyCorporation.com. “While many states like Colorado, Pennsylvania, and Utah have adopted the new federal deadline of January 31 for filing W-2 forms, it’s important to keep in mind what the specific rules are for these forms in each state since the deadline is not the exact same across the board. For example, take note that some states with no income tax, like Alaska, Florida, Nevada, Texas, and Washington, do not require W-2 filings.”
If you use FingerCheck360 payroll, your payroll tasks are taken care of for you. Our team will be vigilant about your tax compliance, while our platform will handle your W-2 filing automatically, and furnish copies to your employees.
If employees have self-service access, they’ll receive an email with instructions directing them to view their W-2. If not, you can print and physically distribute them. The only thing left for you to do is file your 1099 forms! FingerCheck360 does not currently file 1099s forms.
To sign up for FingerCheck360, head to our website, and try it for free today.