The IRS offers copies of prior year W-2 forms on request. The submitted copy is not retained by the IRS, but the information is available for the previous 10 processing years. A full copy of the Form W-2 for a given year is available for a fee.
- Determine which form is needed
Form 4506-T is used to request the information from Form W-2 and may be submitted for free. Form 4506 requests a copy of the entire Form W-2, and a fee is charged for each return requested.
- Acquire Form 4506 or Form 4506-T
Forms 4506 and 4506-T, Request for Copy of Tax Return and Request for Transcript of Tax Return are available on the IRS website in digital PDF format. An alternative way to acquire these forms is to call the IRS at 800-829-3676 and request the forms.
- Fill out and submit the form
Follow the instructions on either Form 4506 or Form 4506-T. If submitting Form 4506, the payment must be included with the form for each return requested. Page 2 of each form lists the addresses for each state's IRS office to which the form should be submitted.