FICA Taxes

Federal Insurance Contribution Act (FICA) Taxes are United States federal payroll taxes levied to fund the Social Security and Medicare system. FICA Taxes burdens are divided between employers and employees and... more +
Federal Insurance Contribution Act (FICA) Taxes are United States federal payroll taxes levied to fund the Social Security and Medicare system. FICA Taxes burdens are divided between employers and employees and are currently set at 12.4% for Social Security and 2.9% for Medicare. less -
News & Analysis as of

Supreme Court Confirms FICA Taxes Must be Withheld from Severance Payments

Finding severance payments to be a form of “remuneration for employment,” the United States Supreme Court in United States v. Quality Stores, Inc. held that such payments are taxable wages – and thus subject to withholding –...more

Fenwick Employment Brief - April 2014

Supreme Court Confirms FICA Taxes Must be Withheld from Severance Payments - Finding severance payments to be a form of “remuneration for employment,” the United States Supreme Court in United States v. Quality Stores,...more

No Refunds: Supreme Court Settles Circuit Split over Severance Payment Taxation

In its ruling on United States v. Quality Stores, Inc., No. 12-1408 (U.S. Mar. 25, 2014), the United States Supreme Court put to rest a decade-old battle over whether severance payments made to employees are taxable as wages...more

U.S. Supreme Court’s Severance Ruling Impacts Future Unemployment Benefits

The decision in Quality Stores not only kills FICA tax refunds for millions of unemployed workers, but it also requires proactive employer actions to maximize future employer and state unemployment benefit payments to...more

US v. Quality Stores, Inc.: Supreme Courts Finds Severance Payments Taxable Wages Under FICA

In an 8-0 decision issued March 25, 2014 in United States v. Quality Stores, Inc., the Supreme Court held that severance payments made to employees who are involuntarily terminated are taxable wages for the purposes of...more

Employee Benefits: U.S. Supreme Court Upholds FICA Tax On Severance

In our February 2014 Information Memo, we suggested that an employer that had paid out severance benefits in 2010 and later years, and paid FICA taxes on such benefits, consider filing protective refund claims based upon a...more

Supreme Court Finds Severance Payments Subject to FICA Withholding

On Tuesday, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously held that employer severance payments are subject to payroll withholding of FICA taxes, as well as employer contributions on the amounts paid. U.S. v. Quality Stores, Inc....more

Tax Alert: New Executive Compensation Regulations Clarify Timing of Taxation

The Internal Revenue Service recently published final regulations under Section 83 of the tax code. These regulations deal with the timing for taxation for grants of property (e.g., stock) that are subject to...more

Employment Alert

In This Issue: EEOC's Latest Target - Severance Agreements; Pennsylvania's Unemployment Compensation Law May Require Employers to Provide Response to Unemployment Information Requests; and Supreme Court Clarifies that...more

U.S. Supreme Court Rules Severance Payments Can Be Taxed

It’s a common scenario for many employers. An employee who is terminated by the employer is offered a severance package. The employee would prefer that the severance payments are made under a 1099 (and therefore not subject...more

Supreme Court Holds Severance Payments Subject to FICA Tax

Compensation for services as an employee (called “wages” in the federal tax code) are subject to FICA (social security and medicare) tax as well as income taxes. Over the past 70 years, the courts, including the U.S. Supreme...more

Monthly Benefits Update

As expected, the Department of the Treasury and the IRS (the “Agencies”) finalized the employer information reporting requirements under the Affordable Care Act (the “ACA”) earlier this month. The final rules, which are...more

Severance Payments to Terminated Employees are Taxable Wages under FICA

The Supreme Court recently held that severance payments made to involuntarily terminated employees constituted “remuneration for employment,” for which taxes must be withheld and paid under the Federal Insurance Contributions...more

Supreme Court Clarifies That Severance Payments Are Taxable

On Tuesday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously (Justice Kagan recused herself) in United States v. Quality Stores, Inc., Case No. 12-1408 that severance payments made to employees who were involuntarily terminated are...more

Supreme Court Finds Severance Payments are Subject to FICA

On March 25, 2014, in a decision highly anticipated by employers, the U.S. Supreme Court held unanimously that certain severance payments paid to employees who were involuntarily terminated were taxable wages for purposes of...more

FICA Taxes on Severance Payments

In certain situations, an employee whose job is eliminated may receive a lump sum severance payment from the employer. The payments vary greatly, often dependent on the length of employment and reason for the termination. The...more

Supreme Court Decides Severance Not Exempt From FICA

Executive Summary: On March 25, 2014, the United States Supreme Court unanimously held that certain severance payments (described as "supplemental unemployment compensation benefits" or "SUBs") constituted taxable wages for...more

IRS Wins One At Supreme Court: Severance Pay Is Subject To FICA Tax

I blogged about the Quality Stores decision which at the district court and court of appeals levels held that certain severance payments were not subject to FICA (Social Security) taxes. The IRS had challenged the employer in...more

Supreme Court Holds Severance Payments are Taxable Wages under FICA

In a unanimous 8-0 decision issued on March 25, 2014, the United States Supreme Court held that severance payments made to employees terminated against their will are taxable wages under the Federal Insurance Contributions...more

Supreme Court Clarifies Tax Rules for Certain Severance Payments

The United States Supreme Court resolved a split among the Circuit courts over whether severance payments are “wages” and thus subject to taxation under the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (“FICA”). In a unanimous...more

Supreme Court Overturns The Sixth Circuit Court Of Appeals: Holds Severance Payments Subject To FICA Taxes

In this e-Alert, we address the recent United States Supreme Court decision in U.S. v. Quality Stores, Inc., et al, No. 12-1408 (Sup. Ct. 03/25/2014), whereby the United States Supreme Court unanimously overturned the prior...more

Severance Payments are Taxable under FICA

On Tuesday, March 25, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Internal Revenue Service in a dispute over the payroll tax treatment of certain types of severance compensation....more

Severance Pay As Wages: Business As Usual

Confirming what most employers have long assumed to be true, this week the U.S. Supreme Court held that severance payments made to terminated employees are “wages” subject to the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) tax...more

Supreme Court Rules That Severance Payments Are Subject to FICA Taxes

The U.S. Supreme Court has unanimously held that payments of supplemental unemployment benefits (SUB payments) are taxable wages subject to FICA tax withholding. The Court’s decision in United States v. Quality Stores, Inc.,...more

Supreme Court Rules That Severance Payments Constitute “Wages” For FICA Tax Purposes

On Tuesday, March 25th, the Supreme Court ruled that severance payments not linked to State unemployment benefits paid to involuntarily terminated workers were "wages" and thus subject to Social Security and Medicare taxes...more

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