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Robin D.
Robin D., Senior Tax Advisor 4
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 13316
Experience:  15years with H & R Block. Divisional leader, Instructor
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WHEN A CHURCH IS WITHOLDING INCOME TAX ON THE PASTOR CAN THE

Customer Question

WHEN A CHURCH IS WITHOLDING INCOME TAX ON THE PASTOR CAN THE CHURCH NOT WITHOLD AND PAY THE EMPLOYERS PORTION OF THE SOCIAL SECURITY TAX AN THE PASTOR PAY THE ENTIRE PORTION OF THE SOCIAL SECURITY TAX
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Robin D. replied 3 years ago.

Robin D :

Hello and thank you for using Just Answer,
Some churches are exempt from the employer’s share of Social Security and Medicare taxes because they filed a timely exemption application. The exemption does not excuse the church from income tax withholding, filing Form 941, or issuing W-2 forms to church employees. Unlike non-minister employees, the church cannot withhold half of the Social Security and Medicare tax from a minister employee’s paycheck and does not have to match any FICA tax as none is held out.

Robin D :

A minister employee is responsible for paying his own self-employment tax. As a result, the minister employee actually pays twice as much Social Security and Medicare as a non-minister employee because he/she is paying the normal employer's portion and their own. They do receive a deduction for half on their 1040 form which subtracts from their income.

Robin D :

The system says JACUSTOMER-sxmu4n5x- has entered this chat!

Robin D :

Did you wish to add anything else

Customer :

What if the church has not filed an exemtion application

Robin D :

Is it a relatively new church?

Robin D :

The church can withhold income tax, but not Social Security and Medicare tax.

Customer :

No the church is 50 years old i am the pastor They just recently started witholding income tax previously i always filed as self employed and paid everything myself They withold no SS Tax

Robin D :

The church should not withhold SS and medicare taxes. This would be completed by you on your tax return. If you did not request to be exempt from SS then you would want to think about making estimated tax payments.

Customer :

Thanks

Robin D :

Your positive rating is always thanks enough.

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Robin D :

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Expert:  Robin D. replied 3 years ago.

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