Understanding your paystub and tax forms can help you make good decisions about tax withholding and voluntary deductions.

View forms online

If you are an active MIT employee or student, you can view current and past paystubs and W-2 forms on Atlas. When you log in, click on “About Me” in the top horizontal menu. You’ll find options for both paystubs and W-2s under “Money Matters” in the left-hand menu.

If you have not already opted into the electronic W2 service, you will be prompted to opt in when you elect your MIT benefits or view your paystubs via Atlas.

Your can view your latest paystub after 12 pm Eastern time the day before your pay date. Your W-2 is available by the last week in January for the previous calendar year. Note, however, that 1042S and 1099M forms are not available online.

Request paper copies

If you are a foreign national, you will receive a 1042S form by mail in late February for the previous calendar year. If you are an independent contractor, you will receive a 1099M from Accounts Payable by mail in late January. If you are a retiree, you can expect to receive a 1099R form by mail in late January. Contact VPF’s payroll staff if you need a replacement 1042S. If you need a replacement 1099M, contact VPF’s Accounts Payable staff.

Complete a Request to Receive Paper Paystubs or visit the “Money Matters” section of the full catalog on Atlas if you prefer to receive paper paystubs. You always have the option to return to paperless status using those same Atlas tools.

If you prefer to receive paper W-2s after opting in, submit a Withdrawal of Consent to Electronic W-2 form or use the “W-2s” link under “Money Matters” on the “About Me” page of Atlas. As with paystubs, you always have the option to return to paperless status using those same Atlas tools.

Track net pay (paystubs)

The “net pay” on your paystubs is calculated using three numbers:

  • “Gross”—your total pay for the pay period before any taxes or voluntary deductions are withdrawn
  • “Taxes”—the taxes you owe each pay period toward Social Security, Medicare, federal income tax, and Massachusetts state income tax
  • “Deductions”—automatic voluntary contributions you chose to make each pay period including dental, vision, and healthcare coverage, 401(k) plan, and parking fees

Your federal and state income taxes are based on your “FED Earnings” and “MA Earnings,” which typically are calculated by subtracting your deductions from your gross pay.

Calculate taxable gross pay (W-2)

Your W-2 displays your “Taxable Gross Pay” rather than your “Gross” pay as shown on your paystub. Although this may seem confusing at first, you can easily reconcile the Taxable Gross Pay on your W-2 with the numbers on your paystub by understanding that Taxable Gross Pay equals the FED Earnings on your final paystub of the tax year—in other words, it’s your total gross pay for the year minus your total deductions for the year.

Review form 1099

If you have received retiree pension payments or long-term disability payments from MIT, you will receive a 1099-R form from MIT by late January. If you have received payments from MIT for contract work, royalties, or non-wage income, you will receive a 1099-MISC form from MIT by late January.

These 1099 forms list the income that MIT paid to you during the just-completed tax year and reported to the Internal Revenue Service. You will need this form to complete you personal income tax filings.

The Details

View forms online

If you are an active MIT employee or student, you can view current and past paystubs and W-2 forms on Atlas. When you log in, click on “About Me” in the top horizontal menu. You’ll find options for both paystubs and W-2s under “Money Matters” in the left-hand menu.

If you have not already opted into the electronic W2 service, you will be prompted to opt in when you elect your MIT benefits or view your paystubs via Atlas.

Your can view your latest paystub after 12 pm Eastern time the day before your pay date. Your W-2 is available by the last week in January for the previous calendar year. Note, however, that 1042S and 1099M forms are not available online.

Request paper copies

If you are a foreign national, you will receive a 1042S form by mail in late February for the previous calendar year. If you are an independent contractor, you will receive a 1099M from Accounts Payable by mail in late January. If you are a retiree, you can expect to receive a 1099R form by mail in late January. Contact VPF’s payroll staff if you need a replacement 1042S. If you need a replacement 1099M, contact VPF’s Accounts Payable staff.

Complete a Request to Receive Paper Paystubs or visit the “Money Matters” section of the full catalog on Atlas if you prefer to receive paper paystubs. You always have the option to return to paperless status using those same Atlas tools.

If you prefer to receive paper W-2s after opting in, submit a Withdrawal of Consent to Electronic W-2 form or use the “W-2s” link under “Money Matters” on the “About Me” page of Atlas. As with paystubs, you always have the option to return to paperless status using those same Atlas tools.

Track net pay (paystubs)

The “net pay” on your paystubs is calculated using three numbers:

  • “Gross”—your total pay for the pay period before any taxes or voluntary deductions are withdrawn
  • “Taxes”—the taxes you owe each pay period toward Social Security, Medicare, federal income tax, and Massachusetts state income tax
  • “Deductions”—automatic voluntary contributions you chose to make each pay period including dental, vision, and healthcare coverage, 401(k) plan, and parking fees

Your federal and state income taxes are based on your “FED Earnings” and “MA Earnings,” which typically are calculated by subtracting your deductions from your gross pay.

Calculate taxable gross pay (W-2)

Your W-2 displays your “Taxable Gross Pay” rather than your “Gross” pay as shown on your paystub. Although this may seem confusing at first, you can easily reconcile the Taxable Gross Pay on your W-2 with the numbers on your paystub by understanding that Taxable Gross Pay equals the FED Earnings on your final paystub of the tax year—in other words, it’s your total gross pay for the year minus your total deductions for the year.

Review form 1099

If you have received retiree pension payments or long-term disability payments from MIT, you will receive a 1099-R form from MIT by late January. If you have received payments from MIT for contract work, royalties, or non-wage income, you will receive a 1099-MISC form from MIT by late January.

These 1099 forms list the income that MIT paid to you during the just-completed tax year and reported to the Internal Revenue Service. You will need this form to complete you personal income tax filings.

Did You Know?

You can customize your direct deposit preferences online to add an additional account.
Research and teaching assistant stipends are considered earned income and are subject to income tax withholding requirements.
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