W4 Employer Instructions

Employers use an employee's IRS Form W-4 to determine the amount of federal income tax to withhold from his wages. This form provides the employer with the marital status and number of dependents the employee is claiming. The employer is also able to withhold an additional dollar amount, as specified by the employee. This vital form is usually included in the paperwork completed by newly hired employees.

  1. Requirements

    • Employers are required to have a completed W-4 on file for each employee. This form should be completed before an employee begins work and made effective for the employee’s first pay period. Forms are also available in Spanish. An employer can receive W-4 forms electronically.


    • W-4 forms do not expire; they remain in effect until the employee completes another W-4. Employees who are not required to have taxes withheld must complete a new W-4 by Feb. 16 each year. If the employee does not resubmit a W-4 continuing his exempt status, the employer should withhold income tax as if he is single with no dependents.

    IRS Review

    • The IRS may request to inspect an employer's W-4 forms. If the IRS sends a representative to an employer’s office, they will look at original W-4 forms for some or all of the business’ employees. Alternatively, the IRS may ask the employer to submit paper or electronic copies of the W-4 forms for select employees or the entire workforce. After review, the IRS may inform the employer that an employee is not entitled to the withholding he had claimed. The notice sent by the IRS will inform the employer of the correct withholding for that employee and the date the employer should transition to that withholding.

    Substitute Forms

    • An employer may use a form of their own design as a substitute as long as it contains the exact language as the IRS Form W-4. The substitute form is required to meet all IRS requirements. Employee-designed W-4 forms are not valid.

      W-4 forms can be downloaded from the IRS website or ordered by telephone: (800) 829-3676. The forms can also be purchased in bulk from office supply stores.

Related Searches



  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images

You May Also Like

  • Instructions for Form W-4

    When an employer hires a worker, the law requires that taxes be withheld from the employee’s paycheck. To properly calculate the amount...

  • Form W-4 Requirements

    A withholding exemption form (Form W-4) is an important tax document employers need to file whenever an employee is hired. It is...

  • When Do I Need to Submit Form W-4 to the IRS?

    IRS Form W-4 is a certificate that the federal tax agency requires all new employees to fill out and return to their...

  • What is a W4?

    Generally, when you start a new job your employer gives you a load of paperwork to fill out. Arguably the most important...

  • Employer Tax Withholding Requirements

    The W-4 assists the employer in calculating the employee ... The federal and state governments established withholding requirements to ensure employers withhold...

  • How to Complete a W-4

    You can itemize your deductions on the "Deductions and Adjustments Worksheet" included in the W-4 form instructions so that ... The W-4...

  • How Should I Fill Out My W-4?

    In steps 2 through 10 you will need to follow a number of instructions and calculations based ... Form W-4 is a...

  • How to Fill Out a W4 IRS Form

    When you get hired for a new job, one of the forms you'll have to fill out is the W-4 IRS form....

  • How to Fill out W-4 for Single Dependent

    Read the instructions on the Form W-4 carefully to ensure you fill it out ... Form W-4 is a federal tax form...

  • Rules for W4 Forms

    The Internal Revenue Service oversees federal payroll tax policies. Federal income tax withholding is a critical task the IRS requires employers to...

Related Ads

Related Searches
Basic but Sometimes Overlooked Tips Can Save You Time and Money Read Article

Basic but Sometimes Overlooked Tips Can Save You Time and Money