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@kt3081962 wrote:

I had assumed the income amounts were based on a different calculation/formual.. So one year I earned $65,000. SSI had me earning about $35,000.


 

I came back to add . . . . . There is one valid reason for this, depending on the year it happened.

 

SSA.gov - Contribution and Benefit Base 

 

Every year there is a annual maximum earning cap set - it is the the top earnings for which SS tax contributions are assigned.  Make above that earnings limit and there is no more SS tax contributions for that year.  The reason for it is simple - it is the maximum earnings for the maximum benefit.  Because there is also a corresponding maximum benefit in a given year and these (2) figures correlate.

 

Look at the chart by year from the above link - So let's say in 1983, you make that $65,000 - the tax cap in that year was $ 35,700 - so you paid no Social Security contributions over what was accessed on the $ 35,700.  Your reported earning for SS would only be $ 35,700.

 

 

 

 

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@kt3081962 wrote:

I am semi retired. I remember getting the social security booklets in the mail for both myself and my husband . I am a widow. I am on survivors benefits still.

All of the incomes every year since the 1970s are inaccurate in those booklets.

 

I called Social security and asked them why our incomes reported are so much lower than we made. They said they get all their information from the IRS. I know what I made in 1997 and 1998 as I had to pay quarterly estimates based on my predicted income per my tax account. My husband made a lot more than those yearly incomes also reported on the social security retirement booklet.

 

So one year I earned $65,000. SSI had me earning about $35,000. Over the years I thought about digging everything up but I had moved so much that i ended shredding all but the last 5 years of taxes and so on. 


If you are now receiving Survivors Benefits - those are the benefits from your deceased husband - NOT your own benefits from your own work record.

 

If you have continued to work and have never received your own benefits from your own work record then the history of your work should still be on your own Social Security file.  Those Social Security earnings records are still done each year BUT they are only available online - You need to register for your "mySocialSecurity" account and the information should be there.

 

SSA.gov - Information on How To Create a my Social Security Account 

 

SSA.gov - Create An Account: my Social Security 

 

SSA.gov 0 my Social Security 

from the above link ~

With your free, personal my Social Security account, you can receive personalized estimates of future benefits based on your real earnings, see your latest Statement, and review your earnings history. It even makes it easy to request a replacement Social Security Card or check the status of an application, from anywhere!

 

Earnings are reported individually - not as a couple (you keep saying "we")  even if you might have been in business together - each person in the couple has to have their earnings separately reported either as  W-2 earnings OR on Schedule SE when taxes are reported annually. 

 

If you had W-2 earning, your employer was responsible for sending your payroll deductions for SS & Medicare to the IRS and also their MATCHED amount.  The employer makes a deposit to a US Treasury account and submits FORM 941 (Employer's Quarterly Federal Tax Return), the payment of employee withholdings and the employers matched amount to the IRS.  At the end of each year, the employer prepares W-2's  for each of the employees and submits a copy of this document along with their W-3 to the Social Security Administration and the IRS.  Form W-3 is a document used by the IRS and the Social Security Administration (SSA) to summarize and transmit an employer's W-2 forms. The IRS and SSA use Form W-3 to track the wages, salary, commission, tips, and other compensation employers pay out throughout the year.

 

The IRS and the Social Security Administration make sure that these all balance and that Social Security numbers and amounts are accurately reported by the employer.  Course if the income is not reported or withholdings not paid - that is criminal and they go after the employer.

 

Since you spoke about paying quarterly estimates, may I ask if you / your husband or both of you were self employed or were you independent contractors?  Did you receive a W-2 or a 1099 to report your earnings?

 

I will be happy to help you more but it is actually pretty impossible for you to make $ 65,000 and only have $ 35,000 reported for SS and Medicare unless there is something else going on.

Who (generally) were you and / or your husband working for - ?  Under what capacity - independent contractor, employee.

 

Why were you making quarterly tax filings? - did the entity that you were working for NOT deduct taxes - if they didn't, then they probably didn't withhold from you your share of SS and Medicare payroll taxes and perhaps didn't pay the employer share either.

 

 

 

 

 

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@kt3081962 wrote:

 

I really do believe the social security administration has kept these numbers a lot lower so they don't pay out as much as they should be paying in retirement.

I know that mistakes can be made (and likely are) in IRS and SS records. But I believe this must be quite rare, I have not heard of any broad range of complaints about this problem and I am interested in following both tax issues and Social Security in the news, etc, it's sort of a quaint hobby of mine. I have read of cases where income records have gotten corrupted due to accidental mix-up of SS numbers, as from siblings or a parent or child, or simply a database error.

 

No errors have been made in the records of income for me, I have compared the listing of reported income from SS.

 

I have to believe that this is an error somewhere, on either end. It doesn't seem that there is a plan to deprive people out of the SS benefits this way.

 

Unfortunately, I don't know of any resource to obtain such old tax and income records.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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how to obtain old W-2 or IRS taxes for the last 40 years.

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Message 4 of 4

I am semi retired. I remember getting the social security booklets in the mail for both myself and my husband . I am a widow. I am on survivors benefits still.

All of the incomes every year since the 1970s are inaccurate in those booklets.

I called Social security and asked them why our incomes reported are so much lower than we made. They said they get all their information from the IRS. I know what I made in 1997 and 1998 as I had to pay quarterly estimates based on my predicted income per my tax account. My husband made a lot more than those yearly incomes also reported on the social security retirement booklet.

I got a call on a saturday morning after I had talked to the SSI office on Friday. He left a message asking that I return his call. On a Saturday? but he had all my information. anyway the IRS can only give you 7 years of your tax returns but you see on the news how so and so paid only so much 20 years ago and investigative reporters can uncover past information. I had assumed the income amounts were based on a different calculation/formual.. So one year I earned $65,000. SSI had me earning about $35,000. Over the years I thought about digging everything up but I had moved so much that i ended shredding all but the last 5 years of taxes and so on. So how can we get old W2s or tax returns from the 1980s to 1990s. I really do believe the social security administration has kept these numbers a lot lower so they don't pay out as much as they should be paying in retirement. And why would that SSI person be calling me back on a Saturday. Of course I did not call him back. The next time I talked to SSI I mentioned it and they said they do not conduct business on weekends.   

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