How to Prepare Taxes With Your Last Pay Stub

How to Prepare Taxes With Your Last Pay Stub
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If you are only waiting on one W-2 to arrive and you have the last paycheck stub of the tax year, you may be tempted to go ahead and do your taxes. If you are certain that the last pay stub has all of the correct information on it, you can use it to complete your income taxes. The information that's listed on your W-2 should all be on your last paycheck stub unless your employer has made some amendments after you got the pay stub.

Look in the “Earnings” section of your pay stub for the “Year To Date” or “YTD” column. There will be a total in that column. If you have gotten paid for regular wages and overtime wages, you will see two lines. They are listed separately, with a total under each. Use the grand total in the “Earnings” section as your income amount for the employer. The income goes on line 7 on Internal Revenue Service form 1040.

Move to the “Deductions” section to locate the amount of taxes you have paid. Locate the “Year To Date” or “YTD” column again. Get the number for the total of federal income tax withheld, which is needed for your income taxes. If you have to pay state taxes, you will also see a section for your state taxes listed. Look in the “Year To Date” or “YTD” column again to get your state income tax totals that you have paid.

See if there are any other sections listed under “Deductions” that may be applicable to your income tax return. These could be things like a paycheck deduction for a health savings account or a 401k. If you have any totals for items like these, you will need to know those for your income tax return.

Get the employer's tax ID number from the previous year's W-2. If you did not work for the employer last year, you can see if any co-workers have a W-2 with the tax ID number on it or you can get it from your employer. The tax ID number is needed if you are going to efile your taxes.


  • If your W-2 never arrives, you must fill out IRS Form 4852 and send it to the IRS.


  • If your W-2 arrives and does not match your check stub that you have used to file you taxes, you will need to filed an amended return using IRS Form 1040X.