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IRS Changes Tax Filing Guidelines to Help Curb Identity Theft

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In March, IRS Commissioner John Koskinen called upon the IRS, state revenue agencies and leaders in the payroll tax industry to come together and discuss tax refund fraud at a security summit in Washington, D.C. In a report published after that meeting, participating groups recognized that identity theft is putting tremendous pressure on the tax system and poses a serious threat to taxpayers.1 They also acknowledged that identity thieves are capable criminals who change tactics frequently to evade security measures.

The IRS’ deadlines for tax activities (the first day to file a tax return is on Jan. 1 and the last day to submit a return is April 15)2 leaves plenty of time for identity thieves to file fraudulent returns and claim taxpayer money. To fight back, the IRS is requiring employers in some states to file their W-2s by the end of January in an effort to get employees their tax documents sooner.3 This provision will go into effect starting in the 2016 tax year and impact the following states plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico:

  • Alabama
  • Connecticut
  • Indiana
  • Kentucky
  • Mississippi
  • Nebraska
  • Pennsylvania
  • Utah
  • Virginia
  • Wisconsin

In addition to accelerating the deadline for W-2s, the IRS is encouraging employers to e-file W-2 forms to help boost security and make the tax process easier for employees.4 By filing electronically, employers can save on expenses associated with paper forms, maintain electronic records for their employees and keep electronic receipts to prove they submitted their forms on time.5 E-filing almost eliminates the possibility of any human intervention as forms are processed and scanned automatically, and helps the IRS submit tax refunds in a timelier manner.

Since year-end can be a frantic time for businesses to complete employment tax processes, it may be wise to work with a third-party provider that offers a range of tools to help with employment tax compliance. Working with a third-party provider can ease the burden on your business by helping your staff input data for W-2 files, understand changing requirements related to the tax filing process and stay ahead of key deadlines, freeing up time to spend on other critical year-end tasks.

For information on how ADP could help your business, please visit:


Learn More about ADP Employment Tax


12015 Security Summit: Protecting Taxpayers from Identity Theft Tax Refund Fraud –

22015 Deadlines for Filing 2014 Tax Returns –

3Temporary regulations end automatic extension for Forms W-2 – of e-Filing –

5W-2 Online: An Electronic Filing Option for Small Businesses –




One comment on “IRS Changes Tax Filing Guidelines to Help Curb Identity Theft”

  1. Timothy says:

    Well heck, this is good not just for preventing identity theft but for those of us who like to do our taxes early. Having to wait forever for my W-2 drives me nuts!

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