November 3rd, 2016 New W-2 and 1099 Filing Deadline – by David Lichtenstein, CPA, MST, Principal Employers have a new January 31 filing deadline for Forms W-2. To help the IRS detect and prevent fraud, the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes (PATH) Act was enacted in December, which includes the new deadline requirement. Employers are required to file their copies of Forms W-2, submitted to the Social Security Administration, by January 31. In the past, employers typically had until the end of February (if paper filing) or until the end of March (if electronic filing) to file their W-2s. This January 31 deadline also applies to certain Forms 1099-MISC reporting non-employee compensation, such as payments to independent contractors. Please note that there is an additional change regarding requests for extensions. Those filing Forms W-2 may only receive one 30-day extension, and this extension is not automatic. You must complete Form 8809 Application for Extension of Time to File Information Returns by January 31. The IRS believes that by having W-2s and 1099s earlier, it will be easier for them to verify the legitimacy of tax returns and properly issue refunds to taxpayers eligible to receive them. In many cases, this will enable the IRS to release tax refunds more quickly than in the past.