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    AMecca's Avatar
    AMecca Posts: 1, Reputation: 1
    New Member

    Apr 24, 2008, 01:13 PM
    Better understanding my payroll check.
    Can someone tell me how to figure out what is being taken out of my check for social security, Medicare and federal withholdings? I live in New Hampshire and I pulled the numbers which I thought where right from the internet and did my math. However the math I did compared to my paycheck doesnít match.

    This is what I did.

    According to my pay check I made 840.00 this week.

    For federal withholdings (7.35) I took,
    840.00 x 7.35 = 6174 -> move the decimal 2 = 61.74

    For social security (6.20) I took,
    840 x 6.20 = 5208 -> move the decimal 2 = 52.08

    For Medicare (1.5) I took,
    840 x 1.5 = 12.60 -> move the decimal 2 = 12.60

    So then I added the three and got, 126.43

    I then subtracted 126.43 from 840.00 = 713.57

    Which to me means my check should be $713.57 and itís actually $678.74.

    Where am I going wrong? If someone could help me out Iíd greatly appreciate it so I can better understand whatís being taken out and as well so I can better predict my paycheck. I donít have anything else coming out of my pay check and if it helps Iím living in New Hampshire.

    Thanks! Ė Alicia :confused:
    retsoksirhc's Avatar
    retsoksirhc Posts: 912, Reputation: 71
    Senior Member

    Apr 24, 2008, 01:18 PM
    How many exemptions are you claiming for your W2? If you claim 0 instead of 1, more money will be taken from the checks, but you will have a bigger refund (or have to pay less, depending on your situation) at the end of the year.
    bEaUtIfUlbRuNeTtE's Avatar
    bEaUtIfUlbRuNeTtE Posts: 1,051, Reputation: 112
    Ultra Member

    Apr 24, 2008, 01:20 PM
    Do you have health insurance, dental or 401K taken out as well?
    ebaines's Avatar
    ebaines Posts: 12,132, Reputation: 1307

    Apr 24, 2008, 01:29 PM

    We need some more info to help with the calculation.

    1. Are you single, or married?
    2. Is the $840 a weekly pay check, or bi-weekly, or monthly?
    3. Did you take any other exemptions when you submitted your W4 to your employer?

    You should receive a pay stub with your paycheck that shows the calculations from your employer - you didn't get one?

    One correction in your math - the Medicare tax rate is 1.45%, not 1.5%.

    Where did you get the 7.5% federal tax rate from? That seems too low.
    ebaines's Avatar
    ebaines Posts: 12,132, Reputation: 1307

    Apr 24, 2008, 01:49 PM
    I think I figured it out. If you are single and claimed 2 exemptions on your W4, and are paid $840 weekly, then the tax withholding would be:

    Federal: $97.00
    SS: $52.08
    Medicare: $12.18
    Total: $161.26

    Which makes your after tax pay $678.74

    The federal tax withholding can can be determined by your employer either by using a formula or from a table lookup. In your case they seem to have used the table - see page 41 in the following site, and you'll see that for a weekly paid employee, single, with 2 exemptions the amount to withhold is $97.

    If they had used the formula, the calculation would have been:

    Pay: $840
    Less 2 exemptions: 2*67.31 = 134.62
    Net: $705.38
    Tax: $82.95+ 0.25*(705.38 - 653) = $96.04.

    The formula is shown on page 36.
    silversage's Avatar
    silversage Posts: 1, Reputation: 1
    New Member

    Apr 24, 2008, 06:26 PM
    The above calculation is pretty accurate.

    If you don't want to calculate it on your own but still want to see a breakdown of your earnings and deductions try going to paycheck city They have an onlne salary calculator that is very easy to use.

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