What is the employer's Social Security tax rate for 2020 and 2021?

Employer's Social Security Payroll Tax for 2020

The employer's Social Security payroll tax rate for 2020 (January 1 through December 31, 2020) is the same as the employee's Social Security payroll tax: 6.2% of each employee's first $137,700 of wages, salaries, etc. If an employee's 2020 wages, salaries, etc. exceed $137,700, the amount in excess of $137,700 is not subject to the Social Security tax. Hence, the maximum amount of the employer's Social Security tax for each employee in 2020 is $8,537.40 (6.2% X $137,700).

Employer's Social Security Payroll Tax for 2021

The employer's Social Security payroll tax rate for 2021 (January 1 through December 31, 2021) is 6.2% of each employee's first $142,800 of wages, salaries, etc. (This amount is identical to the employee's Social Security tax that is withheld from the employee's wages, salaries, etc.) If an employee's wages, salaries, etc. are greater than $142,800, the amount in excess of $142,800 is not subject to the Social Security tax. Hence, the maximum amount of the employer's Social Security tax for each employee in 2021 is $8,853.60 (6.2% X $142,800).

Since employees also have the Social Security payroll tax withheld from their wages, salaries, etc., the employer is in effect matching each employee's Social Security payroll tax. The employer must remit both the amounts withheld from employees' wages and the employer's matching amount to the U.S. government.

Social Security Payroll Tax is One Part of the FICA Payroll Tax

In addition to the Social Security payroll tax, there is also a Medicare payroll tax of 1.45% and an Additional Medicare Tax for higher income taxpayers. (The combination of the Social Security tax and the Medicare tax is referred to as FICA.) The employer must match each employee's Medicare tax of 1.45% (but does not match the employee's Additional Medicare Tax). Information on the Additional Medicare Tax can be found at www.irs.gov.

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