From my CPA, the taxable amount of my social secur...
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From my CPA, the taxable amount of my social security benefits last year was $28,108. This year it was $714 on the turbotax return. Why the huge difference?

Our combined social security benefits for 2020 was $44,798.
2 Replies
Level 15

From my CPA, the taxable amount of my social security benefits last year was $28,108. This year it was $714 on the turbotax return. Why the huge difference?

We cannot see your 2019 return or your 2020 return so we cannot see what amounts or kinds of income were on them.

 

TAX ON SOCIAL SECURITY

Up to 85% of your Social Security benefits can be taxable on your federal tax return.  There is no age limit for having to pay taxes on Social Security benefits if you have other sources of income along with the SS benefits.  When you have other income such as earnings from continuing to work, investment income, pensions, etc. up to 85% of your SS can be taxable. 

 

 What confuses people about this is that before you reach full retirement age, if you continue working while drawing SS, your benefits can be reduced if you earn over a certain limit. (For 2017 that limit was $16,920 —for 2018 it will be $17,040—for 2019 it will be $17,640— for 2020 it will be $18,240)  After full retirement age, no matter how much you continue to earn, your benefits are not reduced by your earnings; your employer will still have to withhold for Social Security and Medicare.

 

To see how much of your Social Security was taxable, look at lines 6a and 6b of your 2020 Form 1040

 

https://ttlc.intuit.com/questions/1899144-is-my-social-security-income-taxable

 

https://www.irs.gov/help/ita/are-my-social-security-or-railroad-retirement-tier-i-benefits-taxable

 

You need to file a federal return if half your Social Security plus your other income is $25,000 when filing single or head of household, or $32,000 when filing married filing jointly, $0 if you are filing married filing separately.

 

 

 

Some additional information:  There are 13 states that tax Social Security—Colorado, Connecticut, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Rhode Island, Utah, Vermont, and West Virginia.  These states offer varying degrees of income exemptions, but four mirror the federal tax schedule: MN, ND,VT, and WV

 

**Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to offer the most correct information possible. The poster disclaims any legal responsibility for the accuracy of the information that is contained in this post.**
Employee Tax Expert

From my CPA, the taxable amount of my social security benefits last year was $28,108. This year it was $714 on the turbotax return. Why the huge difference?

I would need to know your other income for 2019 and 2020 to be able to answer your question.  I suspect your other income is down significantly in 2020 over 2019.

 

Dependent upon your other income, up to 85% of your social security can become taxable. You will see below how to figure if you have taxable social security or you can visit IRS.gov and use the Interactive Tax Assistant tool.

 

  • Tax Formula.  Here’s a quick way to find out if a taxpayer must pay taxes on their Social Security benefits: Add one-half of the Social Security income to all other income, including tax-exempt interest. Then compare that amount to the base amount for their filing status. If the total is more than the base amount, some of their benefits may be taxable.
     
  • Base Amounts. The three base amounts are:
    • $25,000 – if taxpayers  are single, head of household, qualifying widow or widower with a dependent child or married filing separately and lived apart from their spouse for all of the tax year
    • $32,000 – if they are married filing jointly
    • $0 – if they are married filing separately and lived with their spouse at any time during the year
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