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Wendy Reed
Wendy Reed, Enrolled Agent
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 3346
Experience:  15+ years tax preparation and tax advice.
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We are trying to calculate my wifes W2 versus final paycheck

Customer Question

We are trying to calculate my wifes W2 versus final paycheck and there are some discrepancies.

Final check YTD wages is 40352.51 Box 1 of W2 is 42580.99

We cannot figure out why this is so. Now her total yearly income, including her bonuses which are taxed at 33% before she sees them is 43,602. So she had 3500 worth of bonuses.

My understanding is, or how it works at my company is like on my final check which matches perfectly with the W2.

On my last check year to date Gross pay minus my bonuses (taxed at 33%) is what ended up in box 1 or the W2. Thank you again for any help you may provide :)
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Wendy Reed replied 6 years ago.

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to assist you. I will give the best answer that I can with the information provided.


Hello there,

On the final check, the YTD wages may not include the bonus amount. The bonus may show up on a separate line---or only on the check stub for which it was received.


I am guessing that you are rounding off her bonuses to $3500---if her wages plus bonus = $43602. So her total Gross income is $43602. Now, if your wife has any pretax deductions, such as 401k or medical insurance deductions---this could reduce the amount shown in box 1 of the W2. From what you are stating, it appears that Box 1 of the W2 is $1021.01 less than her gross income. If she gets paid biweekly, and approx $39 is deducted each paycheck for medical insurance--this could be why.


Please let me know if there are any other deductions shown on her paychecks, what they are, and I could figure out exactly what the discrepancy is. Also, let me know if there are any entries in Box 12 of her W2 and what they are.



Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Thanks Wendy for your response, let me give you the numbers on the last paycheck and the W2 so you can try and make sense of it :)


Last paycheck:


Bi weekly pay- Last paycheck of the year 12/31


Earnings 2083.33 YTD: 40352.51


Bonus. 0.00 YTD:3250.00


Total: 2083.33 YTD: 43602.51


SS: 125.76 YTD: 2638.57

Mcare: 29.41 YTD: 617.08

401k: 0.00 YTD: 125.00

Flex health: 0.00 YTD 770.00

Fed WH: 195.90 YTD: 4631.23


on biweekly pay her first check she started in march was march 31st.


W2 info:



1- 42580.99

2- 4668.35




6- 619.24





11- blank

12a-D 125.00


13. retirment plan box checked

14. Flex health 1045.00


15. TX (no state income tax)

16. 43625.99

17.state income tax


Hope this helps with the info....

Expert:  Wendy Reed replied 6 years ago.


I have some information for you.


The total earnings from paycheck are 43602.51. This is $23.48 less than what is reported as the state earnings in box 16. The only thing that I know of that could cause this is if there is "imputed income" from some benefit, such as group term life insurance, where an amount is added to the gross earnings for tax purposes. However, this would show up in Box 12, and it is not there, so she should ask the employer or human resource department for the discrepancy between paycheck gross income, and state wages reported in Box 16 of the W2. (discrepancy $23.48)


For the difference in Box 1---You need to subtract $125.00 for 401k contributions--- and $1045.00 for the Flex health. Both of these benefits are subtracted from federal earnings to come up with Federal taxable income. So Box 16 minus 1045 and 125 equals the amount in Box 1. The only discrepancy that she should ask her employer about is the $23.48 that is greater in Box 16 of the W2 than what is shown as gross earnings on the paycheck.


Let me know if you need additional information.