New W2 & ACA Deadlines and Schedules!

W2 & ACA Filing Deadlines & Year End Processing Schedules

It’s the time here at Southwestern, when we begin to look ahead to year-end processing. This year we are focused on year-end especially early because of significant changes that the IRS and Social Security Administration have made to our processing deadlines.

See the End-of-Year Checklist

For many years, the SSA and IRS have required that Employee W2s be in the hands of employees by January 31st, but has allowed those filing Employer copies electronically to submit them until March 31st.

BEGINNING WITH TAX YEAR 2016, all electronic files must also be submitted to the SSA by January 31st. This will have a significant impact on our ability to be flexible with the deadlines for year-end adjustments and raise the stakes for making sure that all employee data is complete and accurate before we begin year end processing. There simply will not be time to make adjustment runs into January as we have in the past.

Additionally, the IRS has stated that the deadline for electronic filing of ACA forms must be completed by March 31st this year. In 2015 we had until June 30th (after the deadline was extended from March 31st.) Even though this is the second year, there are still many issues with the filing system that we are required to use. We are hopeful that an extension will be granted but must operate with the current deadline.

My goal with this email is to alert you to the coming changes and impress upon you the urgency of complying with our guidelines and requests in a timely manner as year-end draws near. We are committed to keeping all clients in compliance with the new deadlines and rely on you to make that possible.

I will outline some of the changes to our procedures and deadlines below, but for a complete list go to our End of Year Checklist page.

All year-end adjustments, supplemental payrolls, Cost of Healthcare amounts and W2 additions, like personal use of auto, must be submitted to us for processing by December 23rd in order to be included on the employee’s W2.

Adjustments received after that time will be processed at a later date and issued as part of a W2C. We cannot specify at this time when those W2Cs will be processed. This will result in additional processing fees.

Third party sick pay amounts will have a separate deadline. If we are aware of your third party sick pay, we will contact you, but it is your responsibility to make sure we are aware that you will be reporting third party sick pay amounts.

We will begin processing W2s in the first week of January. All employee data must be current in our system before that time. We will be sending notices about updating SSNs, addresses, name changes, etc.

Those employers subject to the ACA filing requirements will face similar deadline adjustments. You will be contacted in a separate communication if we are aware of your ACA processing needs.

Please be sure to let us know right away if we did not process your ACA forms last year, and you would like us to do so this year.

If you have extraordinary circumstances that make compliance with these deadlines impossible, please contact us so that we can work with you to form a plan to complete your filing needs.

Despite these new deadlines, we are confident that with your help, all requirements will be met on time. Thanks for your cooperation and your understanding.

Darin Alred
Southwestern Payroll Service, Inc.