When Are W-2s Due This Year? What About 1099s?

At the beginning of each calendar year, employers must provide annual income statements to employees and non-employee workers so they can prepare their own personal and business income tax returns. Which may lead you to the question, “When are W-2s due this year?” and “What about the 1099 due date?”

When are W-2s Due?

Did you know that the dates for employers to furnish their employees’ W-2s and 1099s is approaching? That’s right, the deadline for providing W-2 forms to employees and 1099-MISC forms to independent contractors for 2020 is Feb. 1, 2021.


You must provide each worker with:

  • A Form W-2 (if classified as an employee)
  • A Form 1099-MISC (if an independent contractor and you paid them $600 or more in non-employee compensation during the year and only non-employee compensation.

Employers, you must also file these forms along with their accompanying transmittals (Form W-3 for the W-2s and IRS Form 1096 for 1099s) to the appropriate federal agency (Social Security Administration for W-2 forms and the IRS for 1099-MISC forms with non-employee compensation by Feb. 1, 2021.

Is This Date Different Than You Remember?

After a massive W-2 phishing scam where scammers attempted to obtain personal information and file fraudulent tax returns with the compromised W-2 forms, the IRS moved up the filing date for annual wage and tax reports to combat potential fraud a few years ago. This provision is part of the Protecting Americans From Tax Hikes Act (PATH Act).

The IRS also noted, “Having these W-2s and 1099s earlier will make it easier…to verify the legitimacy of tax returns and properly issue refunds to taxpayers eligible to receive them.”

Many States Are Now Using Earlier Filing Date

In an effort to reduce tax fraud, 21 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico have enacted a new deadline for W-2s and 1099s for state income taxes. Visit your state’s Department of Treasury website to see if yours is among the affected states to avoid penalties for late filing.

Penalties for Late Filing

The IRS recently posted the penalties this year for delinquent annual income statements. They are as follows:

The penalty is:

  • $50 per Form W-2 if you correctly file within 30 days of the due date
  • $100 per Form W-2 if you correctly file more than 30 days after the due date but by August 1
  • $260 per Form W-2 if you file after August 1, don’t file corrections, or don’t file required Forms W-2

Again, these dates apply only to taxpayers who employ others.

Talk to your tax advisor if you need to establish a plan to help you comply with deadlines and reach your financial goals.

At Block Advisors, this comes standard to each and every client we serve. Get matched with a tax advisor now.


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