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Thread: Can we hand fill in our W-2 and W-3 forms?

  1. #1
    Member With Stressed Keyboard Array
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    Default Can we hand fill in our W-2 and W-3 forms?

    Another Quickbooks SURPRISE! this morning....no upgraded payroll module, no W-2's can be printed in QB. What a crock. Oh well. So I have an Office Depot printer friendly W-2/W-3 kit on my desk and am wondering if we can just fill in the fields by hand. I don't think I even know someone with a typewriter to borrow. Its only the wife and I for employees.
    Is this acceptable by the Feds or?

    Thanks,
    Dave

  2. #2
    Post Impressionist Array vangogh's Avatar
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    Good question. I have no idea, but I did some searching and the consensus opinion seems to be you can, but the IRS prefers having them typed. Apparently people do fill them out by hand at times and if you're going to as well you should make sure to use black ink and print as neatly as you can. I assume the desire to have them typed is so they can be read easily and as long as everything can be read writing them by hand is probably ok.

    Keep in mind I started with I have no idea and everything I just said is coming from random people online. Hopefully one of our resident accounts or lawyers will see this soon and offer an answer you can trust more. You can probably give the IRS a call and ask too.
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  3. #3
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    Ok, here's what I was able to do instead. This is much better and in fact very useful. I found after reading the Feds W-2/W-3 issuing instructions that you can just go to the Social Security website and complete the entire process online. Go here HERE to create your account, create and submit your W-3 for the year which just happens to include creating your W-2's as a by-product. Nicely enough, the feds put these forms into a printable PDF which is correctly formatted for printing and disbursement to your employees. To summarize, you create an account from which you create, print and disburse w-2's and you create and submit your w-3 to the feds. Not bad eh? Strangely, the site has very good instructions and navigation. I'm not used to government websites actually working and flowing well.
    As far as QB, it does give you an excel file with properly formatted W-2 and W-3 details for the year. It was easy enough to just transfer that data to the SSA fields. By having your account details in place your business info auto populates the forms as well.
    I hope someone else finds this information useful. It certainly was an unexpected solution to an otherwise annoying circumstance!
    Dave

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    Post Impressionist Array vangogh's Avatar
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    That is even better. I prefer doing things electronically where I can. Saves so much hassle and makes for easier storage of the documents.
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  5. #5
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    1099s and W-2s are not required to be typed, but those that are handwritten may be scrutinized a bit more.

    You're correct that you can file the W-2's directly with the social security administration, and it creates the W-3 and you're fine. Don't forget about any state-filing requirements you have, as most states also require they be transmitted to them as well.
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    Luckily I live in NV. No state income tax or reporting necessary of the federal taxes. I did notice that the W-2's the SSA produced didn't have denotation of which agency they were to go to. No "A" "D" etc. Just 4 identical W-2's.

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    Correct. The W-2's produced by the SSA aren't suitable for filing with state agencies. They don't want cut up pieces of paper from W-2's you've accumulated from all your employees.
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    Member Needs New Keyboard Array jamesray50's Avatar
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    Do you know why your QuickBooks wasn't working today? Is your payroll service still active?

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    Oh we've been doing manual payroll since we have only 2 employees. We have not popped for the Payroll service.
    So does this also mean that the W-'s the SSA site issued, which it said could be distributed to your employees, are not acceptable by the feds on your return? We have not state returns here in Nevada.

  10. #10
    Mr. Tax Man Array
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    FAB == they can be used when you file your federal/state tax returns. But they're not generally acceptable for filing with the state for employment tax purposes. States also have their own process for filing of W-2s, similar to the feds (which the SSA does). This is, of course, under the assumption the state collects income tax.
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