Employers are required to distribute Form W-2s (and 1099s if applicable) to their employees each year by the end of January. Gusto makes final Forms W-2 available by mid-January, we'll email you when they're ready.
There are several ways you can distribute the forms to your team—regardless of which distribution option you choose, Gusto will still send emails to employees letting them know that copies of their W-2s can be accessed in their account. Your distribution options:
Gusto sends all of the required federal, state, and local filings of Forms W-2 directly to tax agencies on your behalf. You don’t need any special paper stock when distributing forms to your employees.
Before distributing forms to your employees, verify that all information appears accurate by downloading draft forms in the Taxes & compliance section—if anything looks wrong, check out our W-2 correction guidance article.
Gusto can mail your Forms W-2 and W-2c (if applicable) directly to your employees for just $3 per person—mailing fees will be added to your monthly invoice.
To have Gusto mail forms to one or more of your team members:
If you have contractors whose forms you’d like to mail, follow these steps to distribute them.
We’ll send all original Forms W-2 and all corrected Forms W-2c—this includes any and all corrected Form W-2cs generated after the original Form W-2.
Download a mail-friendly packet of all your employees’ Forms W-2.
This specific packet does not include the employer-copy (Copy D) of Forms W-2. To download a full packet that includes the employer copy for records, follow the instructions in the dropdown below.
Get a PDF bundle for all employees’ Forms W-2, including employer copies, and hand them out in person (if needed).
If only a few of your employees need paper W-2s, you can also download specific employee’s individual Form W-2s from their profile. To do so:
You’re required to distribute paper copies of your teams’ W-2s unless they’ve given consent for electronic distribution.
Forms will be available to distribute by Jan 20, and the deadline to distribute is Jan 31.
To check and see who has provided consent for electronic distribution in Gusto, follow these steps:
Employees can access Form W-2 in their Gusto account.
The descriptions below are simplified summaries, and there may be other factors to consider when filing out each section—learn more in the detailed IRS guidelines for filling out Form W-2.
Box a: Your Social Security number. Please make sure that this is correct.
Box b: Your company's Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN).
Box c: Your company's name, legal address, and zip code.
Box d: This box can include a control number. Gusto does not use one, and it is not required.
Box e: Your legal first name, middle initial, and last name. Please make sure that this is correct.
Box f: Your home address and zip code.
Box 1: Your total wages subject to federal income tax for the year. This includes tips. This does not include pre-tax contributions, like contributions to section 125 health plans or 401(k) plans.
Box 2: The total amount of federal income tax withheld from your paycheck for the year.
Box 3: Your total wages subject to Social Security tax for the year. This amount will not include pre-tax contributions.
Box 4: The total amount of Social Security tax withheld from your paycheck for the year.
Box 5: Your total wages subject to Medicare tax for the year. This amount will not include pre-tax contributions.
Box 6: The total amount of Medicare tax withheld from your paycheck for the year.
Box 7: Your reported tips for the year.
Box 8: Tips assigned to you in addition to your reported tips. No income, Social Security, or Medicare taxes have been withheld on allocated tips.
Box 10: Amounts withheld from your paycheck to pay dependent care benefits for the year.
Box 11: Amounts you received from your company's non-qualified retirement plan.
Box 12: This box is used to show several types of compensation or benefits that are labeled with a letter code. For a complete list of codes, see the General Instructions for Forms W-2 and W-3, page 30.
Box 13: This indicates if you were a statutory employee, participated in the company's retirement plan, or received third party sick pay for the year.
Box 14: Other informational items such as S-Corp Insurance contributions and Personal Use of Company Car.
Box 15: The state where your company is located and their state identification number.
Box 16: Your total wages subject to state income tax for the year. This amount will not include pre-tax contributions.
Box 17: The total amount of state income tax withheld from your paycheck for the year.
Box 18: Your total wages subject to local, city, or other state income taxes for the year.
Box 19: The total amount of local, city, or other state income taxes withheld from your paycheck for the year.
Box 20: The code or name of the local, city, or other state tax reported in Box 19.