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Easy Fix For Missing or Incorrect W-2s

Updated on April 14, 2016
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Keith Schroeder writes The Wealthy Accountant blog with 30 years experience in the tax field. He is the tax adviser of Mr. Money Mustache.

In this article I will discuss the procedures for filing an income tax return in the United States when W-2s or 1099-Rs are missing or incorrect.

Every effort should be made to procure a correct W-2 from an employer. If the employer refuses to correct or issue a W-2, you can file your tax return without the W-2 after February 15th. Form 4852, Substitute for Form W-2 and 1099-R, must be attached to the tax return.

The IRS will not accept tax returns with Form 4852 prior to February 15th electronically or by paper. The IRS will review your tax return closely when a Substitute W-2 is attached due to increased fraud risks.

You can not use Form 4852 to file extra early and get a refund or refund loan. The Internal Revenue Code has penalties for taxpayers and tax preparers that file a tax return without Form W-2 and 1099-R in hand.

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