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IRS Release Draft 2019 Form W-4

The IRS has released a draft 2019 Form W-4 and separate instructions for Form W-4. The IRS cautions that both the W-4 and instructions are drafts and changes may be made before the final form is available.

While lines 1, 2, and 4 (name & address, social security number, & check box to indicate a mismatch of name and social security number) have not changed, there are a number of other changes to become familiar with, including:

Line 3 is still for reporting filing status, but the choices have changed. Single is now Single or Married Filing Separately. Married is not Married Filing Jointly, Married but Withhold at Higher Single Rate has been eliminated and a new Head of Household choice was added.

The number of allowances were eliminated and replaced with Lines 5-8 which will be used to calculate the taxable wages. These lines are optional if an employee chooses not to complete them. They can use the IRS withholding calculator to determine if additional withholding is needed

·       Line 5 will report nonwage income not subject to withholding, such interest and dividends

·       Line 6 will report itemized and other deductions

·       Line 7 will report tax credits, such as the child tax credit

·       Line 8 will be used only if the employee has multiple jobs at the same time or files as married filing jointly and both spouses work and reports the wages from the lower paying jobs.

Line 9 is for any additional amount to be withheld per pay period, which was previously reported on line 6.

Line 10 is for claiming Exempt previously claimed on line 7.

Lines 11-13 are for reporting the Employer’s name & address, first date of employment, & Employer Identification number (EIN) previously reported on lines 8-10.


The IRS expects to have a revised draft near the end of August with a finalized version completed in early November.

The current draft versions of both of the W-4 & the instructions can be viewed on the IRS’ website.