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Old 02-03-2009, 10:23 AM
control-z control-z is offline
Join Date: Mar 2003
Tax question - Does when you worked or when you get paid determine tax year?

A friend of mine started a new job at the end of December 2008. She only worked one day in 2008, and got paid in January for it along with a few days she worked in January.

She thinks she should get a 2008 W2 for the one day she worked in 2008. I think it's based on when you got paid, not when you worked. Which is correct?
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Old 02-03-2009, 10:26 AM
Duckster Duckster is offline
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My employer bases it on pay date. My employer is the US Government.
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Old 02-03-2009, 10:33 AM
ZipperJJ ZipperJJ is offline
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When I do payroll in Quickbooks, the witholdings I take out go towards the month of the paycheck, not the month of the work dates (I pay our federal witholding taxes monthly). This means it also gets reported to the government based on the date of the paycheck, not the dates worked.
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Old 02-03-2009, 10:40 AM
panache45 panache45 is offline
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Location: NE Ohio (the 'burbs)
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As far as taxes are concerned, the only date that matters is the date of payment. But of course on her resume, she can say she began work in 2008.
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Old 02-03-2009, 11:01 AM
control-z control-z is offline
Join Date: Mar 2003
Thanks all, that's what I figured. The IRS cares when you get paid and how much, not necessarily when you worked.
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Old 02-03-2009, 11:47 AM
CookingWithGas CookingWithGas is offline
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Location: Tysons Corner, VA, USA
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More specifically, the tax code for individuals is based on cash accounting rather than accrual accounting. For people, all that matters is when the cash shows up, or when it goes out for things like deductions.

(Business are taxed differently, because profit is determined by revenue and expenses, which are disconnected from cash. It is possible to incur expenses and accrue revenue without any cash going in or out.)
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