How to Create a W2 From a Pay Stub

by Grace Ferguson ; Updated September 11, 2015
Tax forms

Employers are required to give their employees a Form W2 for each year they paid income taxes. The employer also must send the Social Security Administration a copy of your W2 so they can notify the IRS accordingly. Normally, when filing your individual tax return, you should attach your W2. For 2010, employers have until Feb. 1 to send out W2s. If you have not received your W2, you can use the information from your pay stub to create a substitute W2.

Download Form 4852, Substitute for Form W-2, Wage and Tax Statement from the IRS' website. Go to their website main page, click on "Forms and Publications," and select the "Form and Instruction Number" link. Type in 4852 in the "Find" box. A link to open the form will appear.

Enter your identification such as name, social security number and address. If you are unsure of your employer's EIN, you can ask for it, or leave it blank. If you have worked for this employer for more than a year, check one of your previous W2s. The EIN number should be printed on it.

State all relevant income and tax information on Form 4852. Check your last pay stub for the year for your total annual income, taxes withheld, and any advanced earned income credit you might have received. If you do not have your last pay stub, estimate your total income and taxes as accurately as possible. For tax estimation, determine the social security and medicare (FICA) tax rates for the year you are computing. For 2010, it's 1.45 percent for Medicare and 6.2 percent for social security. If you paid state tax, get your state tax rate from your local department of labor agency. Use the IRS Circular E to figure your estimated federal tax based on your estimated income.

Explain how you determined the amounts in Step 3. For example, explain whether you estimated the amount or used your pay stub. Attach a separate sheet for explaining, if necessary.

Explain the steps you took to try to obtain the actual W2. Attach another sheet if necessary and specify whether you tried to contact your employer or the IRS for the W2. Sign and date the form.

About the Author

Grace Ferguson has been writing professionally since 2009. With 10 years of experience in employee benefits and payroll administration, Ferguson has written extensively on topics relating to employment and finance. A research writer as well, she has been published in The Sage Encyclopedia and Mission Bell Media.

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