how to fill out a w4 for dummies

When you are hired for a new job, you will be required to complete a W-4 form to let your employer know how much tax to withhold. Prior to starting employment, you can fill out a PDF version of the W-4 form online and print it out. If you try to account for them on both spouse’s forms, you’ll end up withholding too little and could face a hefty tax bill if not penalties at tax time. As mentioned at the top of this post, your W-4 withholdings affect what’s taken out of your paycheck each period and your potential refund. In fact, they are related in that taking more taxes out of your pay can mean a larger refund—and the inverse can be true. If you need to claim an exemption from withholding, you can still do that on the new W-4 form.

how to fill out a w4 for dummies

Your annual 1040 tax filing reports the amount you paid in withholding and calculates any amount you still owe or are owed as a refund. The only details required to fill the form are name, address, social security number, filing status, signature, and date. Indeed, there are numerous online tools and calculators designed to simplify the process of filling out a W-4 form. The IRS’s Tax Withholding Estimator is a reputable tool that provides personalized recommendations based on your financial situation.

Step 3: Claim Dependent and Other Credits

Get unlimited advice, an expert final review and your maximum refund, guaranteed with Live Assisted Basic. There are several key differences between a W-4 and a W-2, specifically, who completes it and what it’s used for. Even though you may not need to fill out the new W-4 form, it’s a good idea to periodically re-examine your life circumstances and update the information when warranted.

  • Our partners cannot pay us to guarantee favorable reviews of their products or services.
  • You can change your withholding at any time by submitting a new W-4 to your employer.
  • Checking the box for the default method may seem like the easiest choice.
  • These payments will count toward your annual income tax bill that you will calculate when you prepare your return the following year.

Check the box in option C if there are only two jobs total for the two of you, and do the same on the W-4 for the other job. For example, let’s assume Spouse A has two jobs making $50,000 and $15,000, while Spouse B has a job making $40,000. Spouse A would enter $3,490 on line 2a (the intersection of the $50,000–$59,999 row from the left-hand column and the $40,000–$49,999 column from the top row). Adding these two amounts together results in $6,640 for line 2c.

Step 4:

The standard deduction was then doubled as a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), while personal and dependent exemptions were eliminated. Whenever you run into any major life changes, you’ll The accounting equation Student Accountant Students want to update this form, too. Obviously, if you get a new job, you’ll fill out a new one, but if you get married, have a kid, or get a second job, you’ll ask for a new W-4, then adjust accordingly.

  • Many of the offers appearing on this site are from advertisers from which this website receives compensation for being listed here.
  • But it’s also wise to revisit it periodically as your income, personal situation, and filing status changes.
  • Estimated taxes are divided into four payments throughout the year.
  • If you have a simple tax return, you can file for free yourself with TurboTax Free Edition, or you can file with TurboTax Live Assisted Basic or TurboTax Live Full Service Basic at the listed price.
  • To use the estimator, locate your paystubs and use them to enter your current state and federal withholdings.
  • These offers do not represent all available deposit, investment, loan or credit products.

Our experts answer readers’ tax questions and write unbiased product reviews (here’s how we assess tax products). In some cases, we receive a commission from our partners; however, our opinions are our own. But while you might consider a W-4 the gift that keeps on giving (or taking), it’s also one that should come with instructions.

The Simple Guide to W-4 Forms for 2022

Register for a NerdWallet account to gain access to a tax product powered by Column Tax for a flat rate of $50 in 2024, credit score tracking, personalized recommendations, timely alerts, and more. If you Personal Income Tax have more than one job, or you file jointly and your spouse works, follow the instructions to get more accurate withholding. Every employee is asked to fill out a W-4, usually on the first day of the job.

The child must be under age 16 as of Dec. 31 and live with you for more than half the year. The main differences between the old Form W-4 and the one for 2020 and beyond are steps 2 through 4 in the middle. These are the new sections (with accompanying worksheets) taxpayers can use to accurately calculate their withholding amount for a wide range of individual situations.

Divide the annual amount on line 1 or line 2c by the number of pay periods from line 3 and enter the amount here.

Also, you’ll be giving the government an interest-free loan when you could be saving or investing that money. You won’t get your overpaid taxes back until the following year when you file your tax return and get a refund. The IRS advises that the worksheet should be completed by only one of a married couple, the one with the higher-paying job, to end up with the most accurate withholding. The current W-4 does not ask employees to indicate personal exemptions or dependency exemptions, which are no longer relevant. It also asks whether you wish to increase or decrease your withholding amount based on certain factors like a second job or your eligibility for itemized deductions.

  • It comprises five sections as opposed to the earlier form that had seven sections.
  • You’ll need to enter the number of pay periods in a year at the highest-paying job on line 3 of the Multiple Jobs Worksheet—for example, 12 for monthly, 26 for biweekly, or 52 for weekly.
  • As we step into 2023, it becomes essential to acquaint oneself with the revised W-4 Form to ensure accurate withholding.
  • IRS, along with the new W4 form has also introduced a method for simplifying the calculations.
  • Skip to step 5 to sign and date and then submit the form to your employer.