W-9 is a specialized form used in the US income tax system. It is also called the “Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification” and should only concern independent contractors and self-employed individuals which is a huge part of the modern workforce in the US.
Although you don’t have to send the W-9 to the IRS, many people still wonder whether they can add, delete or change the information in it. Note that you still need to complete it prior to sending any payments. A relatively small $50 penalty may be applied to a taxpayer who forgot to fill it out.
Can I change my W-9 form at any time?
This is a common question for any taxpayer. You may also ask “Can I e-sign a W-9?” To both questions, the answer is “yes.” It mostly depends on the requirements of the requester. There are two methods of filling:
- Electronically in an electronic system chosen by the requester
- On paper using the official form that you can download from the IRS website
Note that in some cases the IRS may demand the hardcopy which should contain the same information as the electronic version.
It is mostly used in very specific scenarios outlined in the table below.
|Arrangements between businesses and contractors||Requesting information about their contractors in the W-9 form when a combined yearly payment to the contractor is higher or equal to $600.|
|Backup withholding avoidance||A payee will receive the full due sum of money if they specify that they are not subjects to backup withholding.|
|Arrangements between banks/credit companies and clients||Financial institutions may demand some additional information from their customers and send an empty form.|
Do I have to reissue W-9 if something changes?
According to suggestions from expert accountants, you should resubmit the data whenever any changes in relevant information occur. You may need to resubmit it in case you move, obtain a new name or ID.
How to update W-9 name change or address
You don’t need to do anything complicated. Just fill it out again. Remind you that there is no need to resend it every time something changes.
The last important tip: never send your credentials and personal data to any individual. Only certain financial institutions and businesses that hire you may ask for information that you put in the W-9.