Close
Close

IRS removes automatic extension for filing Forms W-2

RFP
Tax Hot Topics: IRS removes automatic extension for filing Forms W-2The IRS has issued temporary regulations, effective for the 2017 filing season, that remove the automatic 30-day extension of time to file information returns on most of the Form W-2 series, citing the risk and rise of stolen identity return fraud.

Treas. Reg. Secs. 1.6081-8(a) and -8(d) currently allow a person who is required to file certain information returns, including Form W-2, an automatic 30-day extension of time to file those information returns, as well as an additional nonautomatic 30-day extension of time. A filer or transmitter of the forms applies for the automatic extension by filing Form 8809, “Application for Extension of Time to File Information Returns.”

Treas. Reg. Sec. 1.6081-8T, which is effective for the 2017 filing season, removes all of the Form W-2 series (except for Form W-2G, pertaining to gambling winnings) from the list of information returns eligible for an automatic 30-day extension of time. The IRS and Treasury Department, in promulgating these temporary regulations, said the change was spurred by identity thieves, who often electronically file fraudulent refund claims very early in the tax filing season, using fictitious wage and other information of legitimate taxpayers.

In many cases, the IRS cannot verify the wage and other information reported on tax returns filed before April 15, in part because the IRS doesn’t receive the information returns until later in the filing season, the IRS said.

Under current law, paper information returns are due to the IRS by the last day of February following the year for which the information is being reported. With extensions, these returns may be due to the IRS by the end of April. Electronically filed information returns are due by March 31, but with extensions, these returns may be due by the end of May.

Contacts
David Auclair
+1 202 521 1515
david.auclair@us.gt.com

Shamik Trivedi
+1 202 521 1511
shamik.trivedi@us.gt.com

Tax professional standards statement
This content supports Grant Thornton LLP’s marketing of professional services and is not written tax advice directed at the particular facts and circumstances of any person. If you are interested in the topics presented herein, we encourage you to contact us or an independent tax professional to discuss their potential application to your particular situation. Nothing herein shall be construed as imposing a limitation on any person from disclosing the tax treatment or tax structure of any matter addressed herein. To the extent this content may be considered to contain written tax advice, any written advice contained in, forwarded with or attached to this content is not intended by Grant Thornton LLP to be used, and cannot be used, by any person for the purpose of avoiding penalties that may be imposed under the Internal Revenue Code.

The information contained herein is general in nature and is based on authorities that are subject to change. It is not, and should not be construed as, accounting, legal or tax advice provided by Grant Thornton LLP to the reader. This material may not be applicable to, or suitable for, the reader’s specific circumstances or needs and may require consideration of tax and nontax factors not described herein. Contact Grant Thornton LLP or other tax professionals prior to taking any action based upon this information. Changes in tax laws or other factors could affect, on a prospective or retroactive basis, the information contained herein; Grant Thornton LLP assumes no obligation to inform the reader of any such changes. All references to “Section,” “Sec.,” or “§” refer to the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended.