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How to Fill Out The Personal Allowances Worksheet (W-4 Worksheet) for 2019

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4 min read

As you may know, Form W-4 is used to determine your withholding allowances based on your unique situation so that your employer can withhold the correct federal income tax from your pay. To complete the W-4 properly, you’ll need to go through the personal allowance worksheet to ensure you’re not paying too much or too little taxes come tax time!

You should consider completing a new Form W-4 when your personal or financial situation changes.

The 2019 W-4 Worksheet, Line by Line

Here is more information about the W-4 Worksheet, including how to fill out the W-4 allowance worksheet, line by line.

w-4 worksheet

Although it is late in the year, if you were disappointed in the size of your refund or you had an unexpected balance due when you filed your 2018 tax return, it is not too late to make changes for 2019. These changes may involve decreasing the number of allowances on Form W-4 or asking your employer to withhold an additional amount from your remaining paychecks.

W-4 Lines 1-4

The first few lines (1 -4) of the Form W-4 are used to convey personal identification.

W-4 Line 5

Use W-4 line 5 to indicate the total number of allowances you’re claiming (from the applicable worksheet on the following pages).

W-4 Line 6

Use W-4 Line 6 to indicate an additional amount, if any, you want withheld from each paycheck.

W-4 Line 7

Use W-4 line 7 to claim exemption from withholding for 2019. In this line, you must also certify that you meet both of the following conditions for exemption:

  • Last year I had a right to a refund of all federal income tax withheld because I had no tax liability, and
  • This year I expect a refund of all federal income tax withheld because I expect to have no tax liability.

Looking Ahead to 2020

The IRS has revised the Form W-4 and instructions for 2020. The redesigned form will not use allowances. There are just a few required steps, as explained below, such as entering your name and social security number. Then you have the option of completing more steps for better withholding accuracy. Employees with more complex situations, such as second jobs and family tax credits, may want to do the additional steps. If you have a W-4 on file with your current employer in 2019 you are not required to fill out the new W-4 in 2020, but it may be to your benefit to do so. Here is some additional information about the 2020 Form W-4.


What’s Changed on the New W-4 Form?

Instead of allowances, the 2020 W-4 calls for completing a series of steps. Here is a breakdown of each area:

Step 1 (required):

Enter Personal Information

(a) First name and middle initial Last name and address

(City or town, state, and ZIP code)

(b) Social security number

(c) Filing status

Step 2 (optional):

Multiple Jobs or Spouse Works

Complete this step if you (1) hold more than one job at a time, or (2) are married filing jointly and your spouse also works. The correct amount of withholding depends on income earned from all of these jobs.

Do only one of the following.

(a) Use the estimator at www.irs.gov/W4App for most accurate withholding; or

(b) Use the Multiple Jobs Worksheet on page 3 and enter the result in Step 4(c) below for roughly accurate withholding; or

(c) If there are only two jobs total, you may check this box. Do the same on Form W-4 for the other job. This option

is accurate for jobs with similar pay; otherwise, more tax than necessary may be withheld.

Step 3 (optional – complete for only one job):

Claim Dependents

If your income will be $200,000 or less ($400,000 or less if married filing jointly):

Multiply the number of qualifying children under age 17 by $2,000

Multiply the number of other dependents by $500 .

Add the amounts above and enter the total

Step 4 (optional – complete (a) and (b) for only one job):

Other Adjustments

(a) Other income. If you want tax withheld for other income you expect this year that won’t have withholding, enter the amount of other income here. This may include interest, dividends, and retirement income. You should not include income from any jobs. .

(b) Deductions. If you expect to claim deductions other than the standard deduction and want to reduce your withholding, use the Deductions Worksheet on page 3 and enter the result here.

(c) Extra withholding. Enter any additional tax you want withheld each pay period.

Step 5 (required):

Sign and date the form.

How to Get More Help With the W-4 Allowance Worksheet

If you’re looking for more guidance on the Form W-4 allowance worksheet for 2019 or other questions on withholding, view our W-4 withholding calculator.

For hands on guidance, find an H&R Block tax office nearest you.

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