Employers are now required to file their copies of employee Form W-2, submitted to the Social Security Administration, by January 31, under changes implemented by The Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes (PATH) Act. This deadline also applies to certain Form 1099-MISC reports for independent contractor payments.
This January 31 filing deadline
reflects a change from the long-time practice of employers having until the end of February to file their copies of Form W-2 on paper, or the end of March if filing electronically. The Internal Revenue Service explains that the receipt of this information at an earlier time will expedite the tax return verification and refund distribution processes.