Printing W-2s and W-3

Printing to Pre-Printed Forms
Aligning W-2 and W-3 Forms
Printing to Plain Paper
W-2 Red Forms


AccountEdge has two possible options for printing W-2s and W-3s. You can either print to plain paper or you can purchase the pre-printed forms and print the information to those.

Printing to Pre-Printed Forms

If you have purchased pre-printed W-2 and W-3 forms from us ( or elsewhere the method for printing is different then if you are printing to plain paper (and allowing Formsviewer to create the boxes and lines). The preferred method is to print to plain paper as it usually doesn't require much page alignment.

To print to the pre-printed forms:

  1. Go to Command Centers from the menu bar at the to pof the screen
  2. Choose Payroll > Print W-2s and W-3s from the drop down menu
  3. Select the form (W-2) in the upper right
  4. Select the Payroll Year in the upper right
  5. Enter Employer ID (EIN)
  6. If you need to map any of the boxes (10-14) select the box on the left and then check off the appropriate category on the right
  7. Click OK
  8. Click on the arrow (double-arrow to the left of the employee name) to verify/change any of the boxes for the different employees. Click ok when finished with an employee
  9. Place a check to the left of any employees you would like to print W-2s for
  10. Click Print in the bottom right
  11. You'll be prompted and asked if you want to print the W-3 - click Yes if you would like to print (if you are not ready you can click No and return later)
  12. If you've clicked Yes you will be prompted to enter your employer information, once you've finished click OK
  13. Click to the left of any employees who you've generated W-2s for and click Print. This will print one W-3 with their combined wage and tax information

Aligning W-2 and W-3 Forms

Every printer seems to print differently, so AccountEdge forms have an alignment feature. If you print a records copy (My Copy) of the form an alignment mark prints on every form. This alignment mark is usually, but not always, in the top left corner. It is a black circle with a cross-hair in it. This circle should print 1 inch x 1 inch from the edge of the paper; if not, you will need to adjust the alignment. Once you have entered adjustments they will remain for all additional forms unless you switch printers or print drivers. Below are the instructions for modifying the alignment.

  • While viewing your selected form in the Forms Viewer, Click on the Print button near the top of the screen.
  • This brings up the Print Dialog box. Click the Page Align button.
  • Click Print Alignment Form. A special template to assist you in the alignment process will print.
  • Click Print Test Page. Following the guidelines printed on the alignment form, check the test page. The test page that prints will always be the first page of the form you are processing.
  • Using the sliders or arrow buttons, make horizontal and vertical alignment changes if needed. Alternatively, enter measurements directly into the horizontal and vertical offset boxes. The display will show you how the alignments will affect the page.
  • Continue to use the Alignment Form and print test pages as needed until the alignment is correct.

Note: once Page Align has been set, it is set for all reports/forms, so it should not be necessary to repeat the process unless you switch printers or printer drivers. Always run Page Align and print test forms when switching from one printer or printer driver to another. To continue with printing, click Done and proceed.

Printing to Plain Paper

Printing to Plain Paper is the preferred method of printing as it doesn't require any alignment troubleshooting or purchasing of forms. You can print W-2s and W-3s to plain paper by:

  1. Going to the Payroll module
  2. Click "Prepare Payroll Tax Forms"
  3. Set the correct Payroll Year at the bottom left
  4. Select the FE W-2/W-3 (FREE) - you may see a previous year list - this is ok - just select the one you see and click Display - it will promt you to update during this process

Follow the prompts to print your W-2s and W-3

W-2 Red Forms

In older versions of AccountEdge, when you select to print your W-2s (W2) in the Forms Viewer, you will notice the reference to RED Federal copies. The IRS no longer requires Red forms, as noted in Section B of IRS Publication 1141, General Rules and Specifications for Substitue Forms W-2 and W-3 dated July 2, 2007. The W-2 and W-3 forms printed from AccountEdge on laser printers are acceptable.