IRS Form W-4 is what you have to fill out when you start a new job. Your employer is bound by law to withhold money from your paychecks in order to cover your share of Social Security and Medicare taxes to the IRS. Some workers pay more than others due to certain life situations. Therefore, employees must fill out the W-4 so Payroll knows how much they should be withholding from each individual’s paychecks. Then at tax time, if too much was taken out you will get an IRS refund. If too little was withheld you will ow the IRS money, and sometimes even a penalty for not having enough withheld.
IRS Form W-4 Couldn’t be Any Simpler to Fill Out
…nevertheless, people still become baffled by this form. You do need to know what a dependent is, in the eyes of the IRS. You need to know if you are a dependent. Does someone else pay more than half your bills? Are you under age 19? or under age 24 and a full-time student? Then you might be a dependent. Otherwise, you have to be unable to care for yourself, to be claimed as a dependent on someone else’s tax return.
The bulk of IRS Form w-4 asks you questions about whether you have children and if you pay for child care for them. The IRS will require less withholding on your paycheck if you have children and if you pay for child care. They are trying to help out people with children but they are not trying to help out anyone else. The IRS favors people who are married and who have children, for some reason.
The actual part of IRS Form W-4 that the IRS is interested in is called Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate. It’s just your personal data (name, address, SS# etc) and how many allowances you are claiming. The number of allowances is what stumps people. That’s why there’s the Personal Allowances Worksheet, right above the meat of the W-4 form. Don’t be intimidated by all those words. They are simple questions that any person can answer. Just because it’s an IRS form…don’t be intimidated.
For more information on the IRS Form W-4 and how to fill out the Personal Allowances Worksheet that comes with it, visit the IRS website here.