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emc011075, Tax adviser
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 3166
Experience:  IRS licensed Enrolled Agent and tax instructor
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I am trying to obtain my w2 forms from years 1976,1977,1978

Customer Question

I am trying to obtain my w2 forms from years 1976,1977,1978 as I need to prove my employment and total earned
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  emc011075 replied 1 year ago.

Hi. My name is ***** ***** I will be happy to help you.

Your only option is social security administration. No government agency keeps the records for so long, not even IRS. Who is it for?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am attempting to purchase time worked for retirement purposes/ municipal retirement system. the community does not have the documents and need me to provide the proof
Expert:  emc011075 replied 1 year ago.

The only place you can get copies of your W2 from 30 years ago is social security administration. But there's fee, currently $37 for each year but one of the exemption SSA list is Establishing entitlement to private pension benefits. I would try to get it for free.

You will have to fill out a form and mail it the address provided. Unfortunately IRS keeps information and transcripts only for 6 years.

Here's how the get it from SSA:

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The ssa sight says it starts at 1978. Should I assume 1977 and 1976 are a lost cause. The time worked during those years, if found represent a significant enhancement to my retirement.
Expert:  emc011075 replied 1 year ago.

It might not be. Starting in 1978 employers were required to send w2 to SSA that's why SSA has only w2 starting from 1978. But your earning had been reported to SSA much sooner than that. Call your local or visit your local SSA and ask if they can access your account/records and maybe give you some kind of earning statements for those years.

Expert:  emc011075 replied 1 year ago.

According to SSA master earning file, income (wages and self employment income) had been reported to SSA from IRS since 1951: