What are the Recipient Copy Requirements for Form W-2?

Providing copies of Form W-2 electronically.

Some employers may be considering alternative formats for their recipient copies of Form W-2 this year. Given that many businesses are still operating remotely, one of the easiest ways to do this is by providing your employees with an electronic copy of Form W-2. 

Some employers may be hesitant to veer from their normal paper copy W-2 routine or wonder if distributing electronic copies of Form W-2 is acceptable. The answer is yes! This is a great option, as long as you fulfill the requirements set in place by the IRS. 

Here’s what you need to know. 

Informing your Employees is Key

The SSA wants to ensure that your employees have access to their W-2 Form copies, therefore you must get your employees’ consent to receive an electronic copy of their W-2. You will need to get this consent electronically as this provides proof that the employee can in fact access their forms this way. 

You must inform your employee that if they do not provide consent to receive their Form W-2 copies electronically, they will receive paper copies instead. Be sure to fully explain the significance and terms of this consent. 

You must make the process of requesting a paper copy of their returns clear to your employees, whether that is by making a request or withdrawing their consent. 

You must give your employees a window to withdraw their consent and clear directions to do so. It is important to inform your employees’ that their withdrawal of consent doesn’t apply to previous Form W-2s that have already been provided in electronic form. 

It is also required that employers fully explain any circumstances where the electronic W-2s will no longer be furnished. For example, if they no longer work with your company, are terminated, etc. 

Your employees’ circumstances may change, and they will need to update their contact information, you must provide your employees with a clear process for doing this. In exchange, you must inform your employees of any changes to your (the employer’s) contact information. 

When it comes to delivering the W-2s electronically, employers must still comply with the SSA deadline. Your employees must have access to their Form W-2 copies from February 1, 2021, until October 15, 2021. You must clearly inform your employees when the forms are available and provide instructions for accessing them. 

Does TaxBandits Support Electronic Delivery of Form W-2?

Yes, with TaxBandits you are able to offer your employees online access to their Form W-2 copies. We also help you obtain your employees’ consent electronically, so you won’t need to worry about this. Our Online Access Portal was created with the IRS recipient copy requirements in mind. 

To learn more about the Online Access Portal, check out this video

Ready to start filing? Create a free TaxBandits account today!

Have you already transmitted your Forms W-2 through TaxBandits, but you didn’t opt-in to Online Access? It’s not too late! Simply log in to your TaxBandits account and select “Manage Online Access” under “Quick Links”. 

Form W2

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