News & Resources


IRS Releases 2020 General Instructions for Forms W-2, W-3

BY: Jyme Mariani, Esq. | 02/28/20

The IRS released the 2020 General Instructions for Forms W-2 and W-3. The 2020 Form W-2, Wage and Tax Statement, and the Form W-3, Transmittal of Wage and Tax Statements, were released previously.

What’s New

Here are the new items:

  • Truncation of social security numbers (SSN) on employee copies of Form W-2. Employers may now truncate the employee’s SSN on employee copies of Forms W-2. Employers may not truncate the employee’s SSN on Copy A. To truncate where allowed, replace the first five digits of the nine-digit number with asterisks (*) or X’s. For example, an SSN of 987-56-1234 would appear on the employee copies as ***-**-1234 or XXX-XX-1234.
  • Potential lowering of the e-filing threshold for information returns. While the Taxpayer First Act has authorized the lowering of the e-filing threshold to 100 returns for 2020 and then to 10 returns thereafter, the IRS has not issued regulations to implement the lowered threshold.
  • Clarification on Code P reporting in Box 12. The only amounts to be reported in Box 12 under Code P are moving expense reimbursements paid directly to a member of the U.S. Armed Forces who moves per a military order and incident to a permanent change of station. Employers should not report any other amounts under Code P.

To learn more about federal and state laws, regulations, and information to keep your company's payroll operations in compliance, check out Payroll Source Plus!

Jyme Mariani, Esq., is Managing Editor of Payroll Currently and Payroll Information Resources for the APA.