General Question

drClaw's avatar

Why would there be no federal withholding's on my wife's W2 even though she asked for the maximum?

Asked by drClaw (4452points) February 14th, 2010

I just don’t know why there was no taxes withheld? The thing is she is in school and this job is barely even part-time, she literally does this job for a little extra spending money. She made less than 5k last year, but as far as I know there still should have been taxes withheld. Can anyone shed some light on this for me?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

14 Answers

casheroo's avatar

Just to say, I worked two jobs and made less than 3k total last of them took taxes out and the other didn’t. I have no clue why (the one I made a little more at was the one that didn’t take the taxes out) I was curious about this too, but I think it must have been how they filed the paperwork.

jaytkay's avatar

The standard deduction is $5,700, so that would be $0 federal tax if she files separately, so the payroll software could say $0 withholding.

I would submit a new W-4 to assure it’s done the way you want going forward. The IRS’s Withholding Calculator can help figure that out:,,id=96196,00.html

drClaw's avatar

Thanks guys, this has been bugging the crap out of me and her boss is extremely dumb so I wanted to be sure it wasn’t an all to common F-up.

srmorgan's avatar

Who does the payroll? The dumb boss?

If there was NO money taken out on her W-2 I would be suspicious. Did you retain any of her pay stubs from during the year? Was any money withheld for Federal taxes? Most commercial payroll services will show the amount taken that pay period and the cumulative amounts deducted during the year.

The withholding tables are set up so that you would be even with the government at the end of the year. If you wife’s earnings of $5k were paid evenly during the year, then there would have been no tax deducted. The periodic deduction is based on the amount earned and the length of the period. For example, earning $2k in one two-week pay period would get withholding based on $52,000 per year. Earning $2k in one month would give withholding based on $24,000 in one year.

check your stubs..


YARNLADY's avatar

The withholding is determined by a formula provided by the IRS. If her checks from her work have not had any money taken out, the W2 will not have anything to report. She should have noticed that nothing was being withheld when she got paid.

thriftymaid's avatar

Look at her check stubs to see if taxes were withheld. If they were you have to request a corrected W2.

drClaw's avatar

@srmorgan Yeah, the dumb boss does the pay roll and I looked ate her pay stubs for 2009 and none of them showed any federal taxes withheld.

Shouldn’t it be illegal to not take federal taxes when the employee has filled zero on their W-4?

YARNLADY's avatar

@drClaw It is only illegal if she earned enough to be withheld and nothing was withheld. You need to check the IRS employer withholding charts to see if there should have been, then you can report the employer to the IRS.

srmorgan's avatar

@drClaw Yarnlady is correct about the zero dollar withholding.

You should check to see what her withholding status is. If she was claiming say, Married 9, then her withholding would be minimal based on the income levels you said she earned. Her W-4 should be on file with the payroll clerk for reference if it is not printed on her pay stub.


drClaw's avatar

She claimed zero which is why I find this so strange, they should have been withholding the max.

Do you guys know where I can find a withholding chart?

YARNLADY's avatar

@drClaw maybe this IRS page has a link

jaytkay's avatar

In case anyone is still following this thread, I just ran across a couple of pertinent links.

Easy-to-Use Tax Withholding Calculator

How to Adjust Your Withholding

YARNLADY's avatar

@jaytkay thanks for the links.

drClaw's avatar

@jaytkay I’m still following

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther