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IRS.gov Website
Publication 505
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink10007482

Excess Social Security
or Railroad Retirement Tax Withholding(p55)

rule
Most employers must withhold social security tax from your wages. In some cases, however, the federal government and state and local governments do not have to withhold social security tax from their employees' wages. If you work for a railroad employer, that employer must withhold tier 1 railroad retirement (RRTA) tax and tier 2 RRTA tax.
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink1000248732

Worksheet 3-1. Excess Social Security—Nonrailroad Employees
—Illustrated (Tom Martin)

1. Add all social security tax withheld (but not more than $4,485.60 for each employer). This tax should be shown
in box 4 of your Forms W-2. Enter the total here
1.$4,586.40
2. Enter any uncollected social security tax on tips or group-term life insurance on Form 1040, line 60, identified by "UT"2.    -0-  
3. Add lines 1 and 2. If $4,485.60 or less, stop here. You cannot claim the credit 3. 4,586.40
4. Social security limit 4.  $4,485.60
5. Excess. Subtract line 4 from line 3 5.  $100.80
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink1000248734

Worksheet 3-1. Excess Social Security—Nonrailroad Employees

1. Add all social security tax withheld (but not more than
$4,485.60 for each employer). This tax should be shown
in box 4 of your Forms W-2. Enter the total here
1.
2. Enter any uncollected social security tax on tips or group-term life insurance on Form 1040, line 60, identified by "UT"2.
3. Add lines 1 and 2. If $4,485.60 or less, stop here. You cannot claim the credit 3.
4. Social security limit 4. $4,485.60 
5. Excess. Subtract line 4 from line 3 5.
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink1000269335

Worksheet 3-2.Excess Social Security and Tier 1 RRTA—Railroad Employees

1. Add all social security and tier 1 RRTA tax withheld (but not more than $4,485.60 for each employer). Social security tax should be shown in box 4 and tier 1 RRTA should be shown
in box 14 of your Forms W-2. Enter the total here
1.
2. Enter any uncollected social security and tier 1 RRTA tax on tips or group-term life insurance on Form 1040, line 60, identified by "UT" 2.
3. Add lines 1 and 2. If $4,485.60 or less, stop here. You cannot claim the credit 3.
4. Social security and tier 1 RRTA tax limit 4.$4,485.60 
5. Excess. Subtract line 4 from line 3 5.
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink1000269334

Worksheet 3-3. Excess Tier 2 RRTA—Railroad Employees

1. Add all tier 2 RRTA tax withheld (but not more than $3,088.80 for each employer). Box 14 of your Forms W-2 should show
tier 2 RRTA tax. Enter the total here
1.
2. Enter any uncollected tier 2 RRTA tax on tips or group-term life insurance on Form 1040, line 60, identified by "UT"2.
3. Add lines 1 and 2. If $3,088.80 or less, stop here. You cannot claim the credit. 3.
4. Tier 2 RRTA tax limit 4.$3,088.80 
5. Excess. Subtract line 4 from line 3. 5.
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink10007483

Two or more employers.(p55)

rule
If you worked for two or more employers in 2011, too much social security tax or tier 1 RRTA tax may have been withheld from your pay. You may be able to claim the excess as a credit against your income tax when you file your return. Table 3-2 shows the maximum amount that should have been withheld for any of these taxes for 2011. Figure the excess withholding on the appropriate worksheet.
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink1000273672

Table 3-2. Maximum Social Security and RRTA Withholding for 2011

Type of tax Maximum wages subject
to tax
Tax rateMaximum
tax to be
withheld
Social security  .$106,8004.2% $4,485.60
Tier 1 RRTA $106,8004.2% $4,485.60
Tier 2 RRTA $79,2003.9% $3,088.80
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink10007484
Joint returns.(p56)
If you are filing a joint return, you and your spouse must figure any excess social security or tier 1 RRTA separately.
Note.All wages are subject to Medicare tax withholding.
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink10007486

Employer's error.(p56)

rule
If you had only one employer and he or she withheld too much social security or tier 1 RRTA tax, ask the employer to refund the excess amount to you. If the employer refuses to refund the overcollection, ask for a statement indicating the amount of the overcollection to support your claim. File a claim for refund using Form 843, Claim for Refund and Request for Abatement.
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink10007487

Worksheet for
Nonrailroad Employees (p56)

rule
If you did not work for a railroad during 2011, figure the excess social security withholding on Worksheet 3-1, later.
Note. If you worked for both a railroad employer and a nonrailroad employer, use Worksheet 3-2, later to figure excess social security and tier 1 RRTA tax.
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink10007489

Where to claim credit for excess social security withholding.(p56)

rule
If you file Form 1040, enter the excess on line 69.
If you file Form 1040A, include the excess in the total on line 41. Write "Excess SST" and show the amount of the credit in the space to the left of the line.
You cannot claim excess social security tax withholding on Form 1040EZ.
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink10007490

Example.(p56)

In 2011, Tom Martin earned $62,000 working for Company A and $47,200 working for Company B. Company A withheld $2,604 for social security tax. Company B withheld $1,982.40 for social security tax. Because he worked for two employers and earned more than $106,800, he had too much social security tax withheld. Tom figures his credit of $100.80, as shown on the illustrated Worksheet 3-1.
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink10007491

Worksheets for
Railroad Employees(p56)

rule
If you worked for a railroad during 2011, figure your excess withholding on Worksheet 3-2 and 3-3, as appropriate.
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink10007492

Where to claim credit for excess tier 1 RRTA withholding.(p56)

rule
If you file Form 1040, enter the excess on line 69.
If you file Form 1040A, include the excess in the total on line 41. Write "Excess SST" and show the amount of the credit in the space to the left of the line.
You cannot claim excess tier 1 RRTA withholding on Form 1040EZ.
taxmap/pubs/p505-019.htm#en_us_publink10007493

How to claim refund of excess tier 2 RRTA. (p56)

rule
To claim a refund of tier 2 tax, use Form 843. Be sure to attach a copy of all of your Forms W-2.
See Worksheet 3-3 and the Instructions for Form 843, line 3, for more details.