- Step by step instructions to file Form W-4
- Frequently asked questions about Form W4
Form W-4, or officially known as the Employee’s Withholding Certificate or the withholding form is the Internal Revenue Service tax form for employees to let their employers know about their anticipated tax information so that the federal income taxes withheld are accurate. In this article, we will go over Form W-4 and give the instructions to file in a simple manner.
All employees are required to file this tax form, and not filing it results in withholding a higher rate of federal income taxes than you would otherwise. It’s essential that every employee files Form W-4 to provide their employers with the necessary information. For an employee that hasn’t filed Form W-4, the employer is responsible for withholding federal income tax at the highest single rate.
Although a simple tax form, here is everything you need to know about filing Form W-4 to present your tax information to your employer.
Step by step instructions to file Form W-4
Enter your personal information, including your name, filing status, Social Security Number, and address.
Spouse Works or Multiple Jobs
If you’re holding a secondary job, fill out Form W-4 for the other job as well. Check the box only if on Step 2(c) only if both jobs pay you similarly. If the secondary job pays you very little in comparison to your first job, you may skip this part.
Enter the anticipated child tax credit and credit for other dependents you will claim on your federal income tax return. This is one of the major points in determining how much tax to withhold from your income.
This part of Form W-4 is completely optional but it’d be good if you provided your employer with it. Enter income you earn outside of your job(s) that you don’t pay taxes. The income will be accounted for on top of your earnings to adjust federal income taxes. Then, enter your anticipated deduction. If you expect to itemize deductions, enter a close amount close to your anticipated itemized deductions or enter the standard deduction amount if that’s what you anticipate. At last, you can enter extra withholding that will be effective every pay period.
Sign the document and enter the date of completion. The rest of the form, where the employer’s name, address, and EIN is completed by the employer, not the employee.
After filing Form W-4, the new rate of federal income tax withholding will be effective starting from the next pay period. You can also claim exempt status on Form W-4 which we’ve covered previously. Taxpayers who are projected to earn income under $12,550 should claim an exempt status as they are not required to file a federal income tax return, thus, don’t owe taxes.
Frequently asked questions about Form W4
Where to mail Form W4?
It’s not necessary to mail Form W-4 as you are going to furnish a copy with your employer, not the Internal Revenue Service. You can give a copy to your employer in person or by e-mail if you’re working remotely. There are multiple ways you can file Form W-4, whether it’s online or on paper, make sure to present your copy before you get issued with your first paycheck.
Is there a late filing penalty for Forms W-4?
No, there are no late filing penalties for Form W-4. Although there are no penalties, you shouldn’t avoid filing. Since employers are required to withhold tax at the highest single rate from the income of employees working without Forms W-4, you will withhold more tax than necessary. Surely, you won’t owe taxes at the end of the tax year when you file your return, but it won’t be optimal as your monthly cash flow gets smaller. So, make sure to file Form W-4 and furnish a copy to your employer as soon as possible for withholding taxes correctly.
How much money should I withhold on my W-4
Nobody enters an exact amount to be withheld from their payroll by using Form W-4. Employees can enter an extra withholding amount that is effective for every pay period, but the entered amount is withheld on top of the actual rate. It’s a good way to avoid under-withholding penalties for employees that are behind on their federal income tax withholdings.
What does Form W-4 determine?
Form W-4 determines the portion of your income that needs to go towards federal income tax withholdings. Form W-4 is a very important tax document that will determine whether you’re able to pay off your tax liability or get a refund. Fill out the form correctly and you won’t need to worry about how much you owe the IRS when you file your return.
How to e-mail Form W-4 to employer?
Form W-4 on our site is fillable online which you can download the completed form as a PDF file. All you need to do is electronically sign the document or sign on paper, then scan a digital copy. You can then email Form W-4 to your employer’s email address.