IRS Launches Downloadable Withholding Assistant

On December 17, 2019, the IRS announced it launched a new online assistant designed to help employers quickly determine the right amount of federal income tax to withhold from workers’ pay. The Income Tax Withholding Assistant for Employers is available for download on

The assistant is designed to help employers who manually calculate withholding. The tool will automate withholding calculations using the newly designed 2020 Form W-4, which goes into effect on January 1, 2020, as well as the older Forms W-4.

The assistant is a customizable Excel spreadsheet that takes into account an employer’s pay period frequency, employee data, and whether each employee has used a 2020 Form W-4 or an older version. Employers can save a separate file for each employee, and the tool will automatically display the correct amount of income tax to withhold from that employee’s pay.