Ohio requests school district codes on Form W-2

The Ohio Department of Taxation (ODT) is reminding employers, that starting with the 2016 tax year (W-2s issued in January 2017), to list the four digit school district number along with the school district name in Box 20 when reporting school district withholding. Many localities have both a city income tax as well as a school district income tax. The Department has found that thousands of W-2 statements provided by employers each year list a city name twice with two different tax withholding amounts; one for city income tax withheld and one for school district income tax withheld. It has caused some individuals to mistakenly claim the wrong withholding amount on the return or add both withholding amounts together when filing their city and/or school district income tax returns.

To assist individual taxpayers (the employees) from making these errors, ODT is asking that employers or their payroll service provider to clearly distinguish between city and school district withholding reported on the W-2 forms by including the 4-digit school district identifier and district name. Because of the limited space in box 20, ODT will accept the 4-digit school district number in combination with an abbreviation of the school district name or the letters “SD” for “school district.” Here are some examples of acceptable methods: SD 1904, 1904 SD, GREEN 1904, 1904 GREEN, GRE 1904, 1904 GRE. Employers should explain to the employees receiving W-2s containing school district information that the four digit code is their Ohio school district tax jurisdiction. Visit tax.ohio.gov for additional information, example W-2s and a link to The Finder, an online tool that provides the correct school district number for every school district in Ohio. (Ohio Department of Taxation, Communication, October 3, 2016.)

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