Note: These instructions are intended for Iowa business owners and accountants wanting to file employer W2 forms with the state using the EFW2 text format. These instructions are not for individuals wanting to file individual income tax returns with the IA DOR.
Step # 1. Open the W2 Mate software. If you do not have W2 Mate installed, you can learn more about our W2 software product and download free demo by visiting this page.
Step # 2. Under the Company General Information tab inside W2 Mate, make sure to enter "IA" for the State field and enter the Iowa state ID.
Step # 3. Very Important: Make sure Box 15 State and State ID are populated properly on all W-2 forms.
To be sure, select from the top menu inside W2 Mate "Tools > Update Box 15 (State, State #) for multiple employees".
Select "IA" under "New State" and enter your Iowa Withholding Permit # under "New Employer State ID number".
Hit the "Select All" button to select all employees.
Hit the OK button to apply your changes. Click the OK button to apply your changes
Please make sure to do this step even if you think Box 15 is populated properly on the W2 Forms.
Step # 4. From the top menu inside W2 Mate select "E-Filing & W-2 Forms".
Step # 5. In the W-2 E-File dialog use "00000000" (no quotes) for the PIN (User ID) if you are filing with the state ONLY.
Step # 6. In the e-File W2 Forms dialog select "STATE" under "Federal or State" and select Iowa.
Step # 7. Once all the data in the W-2 E-File dialog is populated, click the OK button.
Step # 8. The W-2 file name must follow this pattern: "IAW2", hyphen, log -in BEN, hyphen, Control #, period, and “txt".
Example: IAW2-12345678-2018001.txt (Control# equals the year at present followed by a three-digit sequence number. This example is the first file uploaded in 2018. 12345678 is the BEN)
Business eFile Number (BEN) The Iowa Department of Revenue assigns a BEN to every business tax entity registering with the Department to withhold Iowa tax.
The BEN is used by filers (employers /payers) and bulk filers (transmitters and payroll service providers) to log into Iowa eFile > Pay.
Step # 9. W2 Mate will create the file and show a list of employees included in the output file. Double check this information.
Step # 10. Upload the file generated from inside W2 Mate (no other file) through Iowa eFile & Pay website.