The IRS encourages everyone to use the Withholding Calculator to do a Paycheck Checkup, which is even more important this year because of tax law changes. Taxpayers who haven’t yet done this can follow the steps below for using the calculator.
Results from the calculator will include a recommendation of whether they should consider submitting a new Form W-4, Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate, to their employers. Before beginning, taxpayers should have a copy of their most recent pay stub and tax return.
First, taxpayers should go to the main Withholding Calculator page on IRS.gov. Carefully read all information and click the blue Withholding Calculator button.
Input general tax situation information, including:
- Filing status.
- Whether anyone can claim the users as dependents.
- Total number of jobs held during the year.
- Contributions to a tax-deferred retirement, cafeteria or other pre-tax plan.
- Scholarships or fellowship grants received that are included in gross income.
- Number of dependents.
Input information about credits, including:
- Child and dependent care credit.
- Child tax credit.
- Earned income tax credit.
Enter the total estimated taxable income expected during the year. Amounts the user will enter include wages, bonuses, military retirement, taxable pensions, and unemployment compensation. Users should enter a “0” on lines asking for amounts that don’t apply to them.
Enter an estimate of adjustments to income, including deductible IRA contributions and education loan interest.
Indicate standard deduction or itemized deductions. Users who plan to itemize will enter estimates of these deductions.