2023 Social Security Tax Limit

The federal authorities units a restrict on how a lot of your revenue is topic to the Social Safety tax. In 2023, the Social Safety tax restrict is $160,200 (up from $147,000 in 2022). The utmost quantity of Social Safety tax an worker may have withheld from their paycheck in 2023 will probably be $9,932 ($160,200 x 6.2%).

Social Safety recipients may even obtain a barely greater profit fee in 2023. The price-of-living adjustment (COLA) was elevated in October 2022 by 8.7% for 2023, in contrast with a 5.9% enhance for 2022.

Key Takeaways

  • Social Safety tax is paid as a proportion of internet earnings and has an annual restrict.
  • People pay Social Safety taxes by way of payroll deductions whereas self-employed people are answerable for paying each the employee-employer parts on their very own.
  • The Social Safety tax restrict elevated considerably to $160,200 in 2023, which may lead to a better tax invoice for some taxpayers.
  • The Social Safety Administration elevated the profit quantity by 8.7% for 2023.
  • The price-of-living adjustment and the retirement earnings exempt quantities are different vital adjustments that may have an effect on a person’s Social Safety advantages.
See also  Producer Prices Pick Up The Pace in September 2022

How the Social Safety Tax Works

In keeping with the Social Safety Administration (SSA), a mean of 66 million individuals per thirty days obtained Social Safety advantages on common of $1,681 per thirty days in 2022. Profit recipients will start receiving a barely bigger quantity of $1,827 because of the cost-of-living adjustment. These funds are funded by the Social Safety tax, which is often known as the Previous Age, Survivors, and Incapacity Insurance coverage (OASDI).

The tax has two components:

Payroll taxes are primarily based on an worker’s internet wages, salaries, and ideas. These taxes are usually withheld by an employer and forwarded to the federal government on the worker’s behalf. In 2023, the Social Safety tax charge is 6.2% for the employer and 6.2% for the worker.

Medicare taxes are cut up between the employer and the worker, with a complete tax charge of two.9% for the 2022 and 2023 tax years.


In case you are self-employed, you pay Social Safety taxes as a part of the quarterly estimated taxes you undergo the Inner Income Service (IRS). On this case, as you might be thought of each the worker and the employer, you might be answerable for paying the complete 12.4%; nonetheless, the IRS permits self-employed people to deduct the employer portion of self-employment taxes from their taxable revenue.

The Social Safety taxes you pay when you work are used to fund advantages for current beneficiaries. Ideally, when you grow to be eligible, present staff can pay into this system with the intention to gather advantages. The longer you wait to retire, the extra advantages it is best to obtain.

See also  Provisional Income Definition

However take into account that the Social Safety program is going through long-term financing shortfalls that would have an effect on future advantages. Growing the annual Social Safety wage cap is one method to restrict the shortfall, however it could not fully remedy the issue.

The COLA enhance of 8.7% is the most important rise in roughly 40 years.

Social Safety Tax Limits

The federal government bases the annual Social Safety tax limits on adjustments within the Nationwide Wage Index (NAWI), which tends to extend yearly. The adjustments are meant to maintain Social Safety advantages on observe with present inflation.

Any revenue you earn past the wage cap quantity is just not topic to a 6.2% Social Safety payroll tax. For instance, an worker who earns $165,000 in 2023 can pay $9,932 in Social Safety taxes ($160,200 x 6.2%).

Be mindful, nonetheless, that there isn’t any wage base restrict for Medicare tax. Whereas the worker is barely topic to Social Safety tax on the primary $160,200, they should pay 1.45% Medicare tax on your complete $165,000. People who earn greater than $200,000 are additionally topic to a 0.9% further Medicare tax.

The mix of the rise within the Social Safety tax restrict and the extra Medicare tax for high-earners may lead to decrease take-home pay. Sadly, meaning staff who earned over $200,000 in 2022 are vulnerable to owing extra taxes in 2023.

Right here is an instance of how the Social Safety restrict works:

Social Safety Tax Restrict Instance
2022 Revenue 2022 Wage Cap 2022 Social Safety Taxes 2023 Revenue 2023 Wage Cap 2023 Social Safety Taxes
 $150,000 $147,000 $9,114 $150,000 $160,200 $9,932
Change in taxes paid from 2022 to 2023.

Historical past of Social Safety Tax Limits

The Social Safety tax charge not often adjustments, as workers have been paying 6.2% since 1990; nonetheless, in contrast to the tax charge, the Social Safety tax restrict is adjusted yearly.

The federal authorities elevated the Social Safety tax restrict in 10 out of the previous 11 years. The biggest enhance was in 2023 when it was raised nearly 9% from $147,000 in 2022 to $160,200 in 2023.

Value-of-Residing Adjustment (COLA)

The COLA is an annual adjustment made to the Social Safety profit quantity. It’s measured by the Division of Labor’s Client Worth Index for City Wage Earners and Clerical Employees (CPI-W). Congress carried out annual COLA changes beginning in 1975 when inflation charges had been extraordinarily excessive.

The COLA is 8.7% for 2023. Because of this Social Safety recipients will see a rise of their month-to-month Social Safety funds. This enhance is a giant distinction from previous years. People will obtain a mean of $1,827 of their SSA advantages, and {couples} will obtain on common $2,972 in 2023, due to the COLA enhance.

Retirement Earnings Take a look at Exempt Quantities

Employees who obtain advantages earlier than they attain full retirement age (FRA) are topic to the retirement earnings check. In case your revenue exceeds sure thresholds, then Social Safety will withhold advantages till you attain FRA. Just like the Social Safety tax restrict, these thresholds usually enhance yearly with the nationwide wage index.

There are two annual earnings check exempt quantities. The primary applies to people youthful than retirement age and the opposite applies to people who attain FRA throughout that yr. For youthful recipients, Social Safety withholds $1 for each $2 in extra of their exempt quantity. People who attain retirement age may have $1 withheld for each $3 in extra of their exempt quantity.

In 2023, the earnings check exemption quantities will enhance to:

  • $21,240 for people youthful than the FRA
  • $56,520 for individuals who attain their FRA

In different phrases, a person who earns $21,240 ($56,520) or much less in 2023 could also be eligible to obtain full Social Safety advantages. That is up from $19,560 ($51,960) in 2022.

Who Has to Pay Social Safety Taxes?

In the event you work as an worker in the USA, your employer will deduct Social Safety taxes as a part of your payroll. In case you are self-employed, you might be answerable for remitting your personal Social Safety taxes. Underneath each conditions, most staff are required to contribute Social Safety taxes as much as IRS limits.

Underneath restricted circumstances, some people could declare a qualifying spiritual exemption or non permanent scholar exemption. International authorities workers and nonresident aliens may additionally not be required to pay Social Safety taxes. Lastly, people that do not make sufficient cash may additionally not find yourself paying Social Safety.

What Is the Social Safety Tax Fee in 2023?

The Social Safety portion is taxed at 6.2% on earnings as much as the utmost taxable quantity, whereas the Medicare portion is taxed at 1.45%. In complete, the mixed charge is 7.65% as much as most taxable quantities, with the utmost complete taxable revenue quantity having elevated once more in 2023.

Why Do I Pay Social Safety Tax?

Employees pay Social Safety taxes to help authorities packages in society. Social Safety profit funds issued by the federal government to retired people are funded utilizing assistance from Social Safety tax funds from present staff. When present staff retire, they are going to then grow to be eligible to assert these authorities advantages sooner or later.

What Is the Most Taxable Quantity for Social Safety Taxes?

In 2023, the utmost taxable quantity is as much as $160,200 of revenue. As much as this quantity, an worker is answerable for 6.2% of Social Safety taxes and the employer is answerable for 6.2% of Social Safety taxes. Self-employed people are answerable for each parts of the tax.

Who Is Exempt From Paying Social Safety Tax?

Sure people could declare an exemption and never be required to pay Social Safety taxes. Some spiritual teams that overtly oppose Social Safety advantages could declare a spiritual exemption. Non-resident aliens could also be exempt relying on their sort of visa. College students working at their college could also be exempt. Lastly, staff for a international authorities could also be exempt beneath sure circumstances. In the event you consider chances are you’ll fall into one in every of these teams, seek the advice of your tax advisor.

The Backside Line

Social Safety is a major profit that helps thousands and thousands of retirees, disabled people, and surviving spouses. The Social Safety Administration adjusts advantages every year to maintain up with inflation, which regularly means a much bigger fee for recipients.

Nevertheless, the annual will increase is probably not ample to maintain this system in future years. It is not sensible to depend on Social Safety to be your solely supply of revenue in retirement if it can save you extra. Many tax-advantaged financial savings accounts can be found to construct an extra nest egg.