In order to provide relief during the COVID-19 pandemic, a Presidential Memorandum was issued on August 8, 2020 to temporarily defer service members Social Security, as seen on Service Members Leave and Earnings Statement (LES) as “FICA-SOC SECURITY” tax withholdings.
WHAT IS SOCIAL SECURITY TAX?
Social Security tax is also called the Old Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance (OASDI) tax and is required by law. The tax funds the Social Security program, which is administered by the Social Security Administration.
HOW IS SOCIAL SECURITY TAX CALCULATED?
The Social Security tax is set by at law at 6.2%. The tax is calculated as 6.2% of a military member’s basic pay.
For example, an E5 with 8 years of service has a monthly basic pay rate of $3,306.30. Assuming the E5 was paid for the whole month of duty, the monthly Social Security tax liability would be calculated at 6.2% of $3,306.30, which equals $204.99.
Members can use their August or prior Leave and Earnings Statements as a good reference for their typical Social Security tax withholding amount.