What To Do When An Employer Goofs Up Your Tax Form

Although it’s tempting to duck and cover to protect yourself from the onslaught of tax forms filling up your mailbox these days, it’s a good idea to examine the numbers on your W2s and 1099s to ensure they’re accurate. If an employer or bank screws up and reports it gave you more money than it really did and you don’t notice, you’re on the hook for the extra taxes.

Blogger and CPA Amber tells us that if you spot a discrepancy with your own records and the tax information, you should notify the company immediately and ask for an amended form. The wrong number you received on your copy was also reported to the IRS.

It stands to reason, though, that if a company’s payroll department is sloppy enough to make such an error, it may not be quick to fix it. If you can’t get a response from the company, Amber recommends you take your complaint to the IRS:

I would call the IRS to explain at 1-800-829-1040 and have this info ready: name, address, SSN, and payment information and the name, address, and phone number of the payer. Remember that if someone tries to tell you to file for an extension to wait for this to get sorted out, it’s only an extension to FILE, not to PAY and if you don’t PAY on time, you get hit with interest and penalties. Worst case scenario is that you report the incorrect amount, pay the extra taxes, and when it all gets settled at a later date, you get refunded. And if that were to happen I think you can supposedly get interest/penalty money from the company that screwed it up the first place.

If you’ve ever been sent an incorrect W2 or 1099, what did you do?