Would you want to have your SS tax deferred for the last 4 months of 2020?

Under executive order, companies in the US have the option of not withholding the 6.2% of social security tax the employee is responsible for. It is only available to employees that make less than $4,000 every two weeks, or $104,000 annually.

It is not a forgiveness of the tax, but a deferral to 2021.

So if you make $2,000 every two weeks, or $52,000 per year, then your take home pay on a bi-weekly basis is going to increase by $124 per pay period.

Then starting in 2021 for January - April, you’re going to see your net pay decrease by $248 per pay period. That’s the 6.2% payroll tax you normally would pay, plus another 6.2% to pay the tax you didn’t pay in the last 4 months in 2020.

So essentially it’s a small loan that the Federal government is advancing you for 4 months this year and then going to collect back next year.

Want it?

My company has decided that we will not participate.

Sure. Free loans make me money by sitting in a bank account for the intervening time.

What if I change jobs in the meantime. Will they figure out that paperwork?

Guidance is unclear from the IRS. The Company could withhold the tax deferment from your final paycheck. If for some reason the Company cannot collect the tax from the employee, then the Company is liable for its final remittance to the government.

“Free loans make me money by sitting in a bank account for the intervening time.”

Even if you got the maximum amount for the 4 months (~$2150) and put it in a savings account (~1% interest) for 4 months, you would get like $5.

I think most people would prefer the paycheck stability over $5.

No. Do not want.

I’ll pass on it as well. Avoidance of future red tape is worth $5 to me.

Doesn’t apply to me now, because I don’t make any money, and it didn’t apply to me when I was working, because I made too much, but if it did, no. Given the number of jobs at risk now, who would not save it just in case? And if someone gets laid off, are they then also responsible for repaying the money on next year’s taxes - when they might have it? The spending issue is for those without jobs.
Stupid idea right now. But we know where it came from, don’t we?

If it applied to me* I would not want it. It’s just one more thing that can go wrong.

If I were an employer, I’d hate it. Extra work and a chance of getting stuck with debt during a pandemic? Nope.

  • we have PERS instead of SS. (why is this turning an asterisk into a bullet list?)

No, I don’t want it. I’d almost always rather not incur a future debt.

I’m with the rest of the folks, this is A Bad Idea from any perspective. I suppose it might have some temporary benefit at some point for politicians, buuuut, nah brah, leave my paycheck alone thank you.

governmental payday loans? Really?

I do payroll at my business. When I first heard about this deferment, I hemmed and hawed about whether or not we should even offer it to our employees. Mainly because I don’t believe some of them will understand that it’ll have to be paid back. The one person that I think probably needs the money the most, probably understands it the least. He was one of the people that threw a fit about Obama raising payroll taxes. He’s so far Right that he won’t listen to anything non-critical of Obama. I couldn’t explain to him that Obama didn’t raise payroll taxes, he temporarily lowered them and they were going back to where they started.

In any case, a few weeks ago, assuming this would be an option I could choose to offer and assuming the payroll software would get a patch that would allow it to be different for each employee, my plan was to ask each employee what they wanted to and go from there. I mean, it’s really not my problem if they fully understand it, right? I generally make a point of not giving people tax advice.


This is where the problems start. My assumption was that each employee would still accrue federal payroll taxes and, again my assumption, they’d have to pay it back with their 2020 tax return.
However, as of the last time I looked at the guidance, the employer will track how much each employee owes (the software takes care of that, no big deal), and the employer has to deduct it from their 2021 paychecks. The problem is, the employer owes the money. The way it’s currently stated, if an employee were to quit, their employer would have to pay that back out of pocket.

I have to assume that’ll get updated to say that the employee owes the money, not the employer. Not only does that not make sense, if it stays that way I think a lot of people are going to get new jobs lined up for the first of the year and leave their soon to be ex-employer to pay the bill.

And, of course, there’s no benefit for the unemployed.

**I use two asterisks to avoid that problem.

It is not an Executive Order (EO). It is a simple memorandum.

Also, anyone who makes more than $4,000 in a two week period will not have the deferral for that two week period.

I pay off my SS tax in March-ish. This won’t affect me, and it’s a stupid idea. Stimulating the economy through dribbling out weekly or biweekly pittances will have zero effect.

Retired, so not applicable to me but waaaaay beyond stooooopit as far as I am concerned.

this seems like a payday loan scheme to be honest …

You’ve talked me out of it. Too many ways for it to go wrong. I’ll pass.

Paragraphs that start with an asterisk are assumed to be elements in a bullet list. Said another way, a leading asterisk is (one of) the command to create a bulleted list with extra empty space above and below.

  • example starting with an asterisk.

Paragraphs that start with a backslash \ then an asterisk ignore the formatting command and just display the asterisk as an asterisk.
* example starting with a backslash then an asterisk.

In general, any time you want to display a character that Discourse would otherwise think was a formatting instruction, precede that with a \. And use two \'s to display just one.

So I can do things like
<b>This isn’t bold because I put backslashes in front of the angle brackets.</b>.
This is bold because I didn’t put backslashes in front of the angle brackets.

You can quote this post and examine what I’ve done in the edit box. Then cancel your reply.

Back to the topic of the thread …

This is really the thin edge of a plan to quietly defund Social Security.

If Trump & the Rs are re-elected they’ll continue the “holiday” until SS goes broke very soon.

And if Biden and the Ds are elected, they’ll need to reinstate the current tax, making an easy target for more RW talking head anger: “The first thing the socialist D’s did in office is raise taxes; quick, crash the stock market so it’ll be their fault!!!1!1!!”

For all these reasons no sane American of either party should support this nonsense. And should be loudly calling for the lie at the center to be exposed.

Not only is it a stalking horse for gutting SS, if it was made permanent, employers could look at you and say, guess what, you just got a 6.2% raise, so don’t expect much from me the next couple of years.