With such a drastic change to the new Form W-4, other materials need to be updated too. One document that was recently revised is the withholding "lock-in" letter, also known as the 2802C letter. This letter is sent to an employer to notify them that the payroll department should increase the employee's withholding rate due to a lack of withholdings. If the employee has already filed a new Form W-4 to comply with the IRS, then they can disregard this letter. Otherwise, a new Form W-4 should be filed to update withholding rates.
Lock-In Letter updates
As we mentioned in a previous article, the new Form W-4 differs significantly from the earlier versions. The old Form W-4 asked for the number of allowances, filing status, exemptions, and more. The new Form W-4 asks for filing status and other sources of income, including how much your dependents make. Because of this change, the lock-in letters needed significant updating. The new lock-in letters will include filing status, the withholding rate method, other income amounts, deduction amounts, and more.
The new lock-in letters are not in effect at the moment. The letters are required to be cleared for publishing before they are sent out, so employers may still be receiving the old format of the lock-in letter in the meantime. To learn more from the IRS about the lock-in letter, you can visit their page about the 2802c letter.
These free resources should not be taken as tax or legal advice. Content provided is intended as general information. Tax regulations and laws change and the impact of laws can vary. Consult a tax advisor, CPA or lawyer for guidance on your specific situation.