What is Form W-3?
Form W-3, Transmittal of Wage and Tax Statements, is a form by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). It serves as a transmittal document showing the total earnings for all W-2 forms an employer is filing.
Employers need to file Form W-3 each year together with W-2 forms to report annual wages and tax withholdings of employees to the Social Security Administration (SSA).
Where to get Form W-3?
You may get a copy of Form W-3 that you can download and print to fill out manually from the official IRS website. For your convenience, you may fill out Form W-3 on PDFRun electronically.
How to fill out Form W-3?
Form W-3 is a single-page document. Answer it accurately and correctly to avoid any problems with the IRS.
Prepare payroll records and the W-2 forms of employees before filling out Form W-3 to ensure the accuracy of the information you will enter in Form W-3.
Box a — Control Number
Enter the control number.
Box b — Kind of Payer, Kind of Employer, Third-Party Sick Pay
Mark the appropriate box to determine your Kind of Payer. You may select:
- Hshld. Emp.
- Medicare govt. emp.
Mark the appropriate box to determine your Kind of Employer. You may select:
- None apply
- 501c non-govt.
- State/local non-501c
- State/local 501c
- Federal govt.
Mark the Third-party sick pay, if it applies to you.
Box c — Total number of Forms W-2
Enter the total number of W-2 you are filing.
Box d — Establishment number
Enter the establishment number.
Box e — Employer identification number (EIN)
Enter the nine-digit Employer Identification Number (EIN) assigned to you by the IRS.
Box f — Employer’s name
Enter the name of your business.
Box g — Employer’s address and ZIP code
Enter the address of your business, including the ZIP code.
Box h — Other EIN used this year
Enter other EIN used for the year, if there is any.
Box 1 — Wages, tips, other compensation
Enter the total annual taxable wages, tips, and other forms of compensation.
Box 2 — Federal income tax withheld
Enter the federal income tax withheld from the employees’ pay during the year.
Box 3 — Social security wages
Enter the total wages subject to Social Security tax, excluding tips.
Box 4 — Social security tax withheld
Enter the total amount of Social Security taxes withheld for the year.
Box 5 — Medicare wages and tips
Enter the total amount of wages and tips subject to Medicare taxes, including tips. Also, enter tips that the employees reported even if you did not have enough employee funds to collect the Medicare tax for those tips.
Box 6 — Medicare tax withheld
Enter the amount of Medicare taxes withheld for the year.
Box 7 — Social security tips
Enter the total amount of reported tips subject to Social Security tax. Report all tips in box 1 along with wages and other compensation. Also, include any tips reported in box 7 in box 5.
Box 8 — Allocated tips
Enter any tip income allocated by the employer to the employees. Do not include this amount in boxes 1, 3, 5, or 7.
Box 9 — Not Applicable
This box is no longer used.
Box 10 — Dependent care benefits
Enter the total benefits provided to the employees under a dependent care assistance program.
Box 11 — Nonqualified plans
Enter the total amount distributed to the employees from the nonqualified deferred compensation or a non-government pension plan. This is to determine if any part of the amount reported in box 1 or boxes 3 and/or 5 was earned in a prior year.
Box 12a — Deferred compensation
Enter the deferred compensation.
Box 12b — Not Applicable
This box is no longer used.
Box 13 — For third-party sick pay use only
Enter the nonqualified deferred compensation for third-party sick pay use only.
Box 14 — Income tax withheld by payer of third-party sick pay
Enter the amount of income tax withheld by the payer of third-party sick pay correctly.
Box 15 — State, Employer’s state ID number
Enter the employer’s state and state tax identification number.
Box 16 — State wages, tips, etc.
Enter the total taxable wages the employees earned in a specific state.
Box 17 — State income tax
Enter the total amount of state income taxes withheld from the employees’ wages reported in box 16.
Box 18 — Local wages, tips, etc.
Enter the amount of wages and tips subject to local, city, or other state income taxes.
Box 19 — Local income tax
Enter the total taxes withheld from the employees’ wages for local, city, or other state income taxes.
Employer’s contact person
Enter the full legal name of the person who represents your company.
Employer’s telephone number
Enter the active telephone number of your company.
Employer’s fax number
Enter the active fax number of your company.
Employer’s email address
Enter the active email address of your company.
Affix the signature of the person who represents your company.
Enter the job title of the person who represents your company.
Enter the date Form W-3 was signed.
Where to submit Form W-3?
You may file Form W-3 online or by mail.
If you are filing paper forms, you should mail Form W-3, as well as the entire Copy A of W-2 forms for each employee, to :
Social Security Administration
Direct Operations Center
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18769-0001
Make sure to send Form W-3 by mail by January 31.
If you are filing W-2 and W-3 electronically, you’ll have to register for the Social Security Administration’s business services online (BSO) platform.
Once registered, you have two options:
- Use fill-in forms to create W-2s for each employee; or
- Upload wage files from your payroll or tax software according to a given format.
BSO will generate a W-3 form for you once W-2 forms are submitted.
In case of any errors on the submitted W-3 form, you must file a W-2c and a W-3c form with the Social Security Administration. File Forms W-2c and W-3c as soon as possible after you discover an error.
To give more time to find errors, give W-2 forms to employees earlier in January because the deadline for giving W-2 forms to employees and sending W-2 and W-3 forms to the Social Security Administration is the same date: January 31 of the year following the tax year.
If you don't think you'll be able to submit the W-2 and W-3 forms on time, you may request one 30-day extension by filing Form 8809, Application for Extension of Time to File Information Returns. You must submit the application no later than the due date of the form.