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What You Need to Know about Paystubs

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Paystubs are an integral part of the payroll process, acting as proof that employees have been paid their wages and documenting how much those wages were. Paystubs also document hours worked, deductions, and more so that employees can be sure they’re being paid correctly each time their paychecks come in the mail. If you work for an hourly wage, you’ll receive one pay stub every time you receive your paycheck; if you are paid once per month or every two weeks, you’ll receive one pay stub at the end of each period.

1) Employee Taxes

There are two types of taxes you’ll pay as an employee: federal income tax and FICA (Federal Insurance Contributions Act) taxes. These include Social Security and Medicare taxes, which are calculated based on your income. The more you earn, generally speaking, the more money is taken out of each paycheck for these taxes-but everyone pays them. And in order to ensure you get your money’s worth from these deductions-that is, so that you don’t end up paying too much in taxes-you can make adjustments to both withholdings and estimated payments throughout the year. Both require filing with either IRS Form W-4 or IRS Form 1040-ES respectively.

2) FICA Taxes

Believe it or not, your payroll taxes are probably one of your biggest expenses each month. If you’re planning on starting a company and hiring employees in order to grow, you can expect those costs to increase significantly. FICA stands for Federal Insurance Contributions Act, which is essentially a tax that employers and employees pay toward Social Security and Medicare. As an employer, you’ll be responsible for paying half of these taxes (6.2% of each employee’s gross salary). The employee pays the other half-in fact, they have FICA automatically taken out of their paycheck before they even see it.

3) Wage Garnishment

What is Wage Garnishment? While people often assume that wage garnishment involves a court order, in fact, it can be initiated by creditors on their own. Creditors are typically limited in how much they can take from your paycheck and may only take what you’re legally obligated to pay. However, if you consistently fall behind on your bills or miss payments, you might find that your creditors have taken action against you without ever involving a court or going through any sort of legal process. What Happens During Wage Garnishment? Once a creditor has decided that wage garnishment is necessary, they must go through several steps before they’re able to do so.

4) Paid Vacation Time

If you’re salaried, your employer is required by law to pay you for vacation time. This is not true if you’re hourly. Some companies offer paid sick days. To confirm that your company is giving you what it’s legally obligated to, look at your last few pay stubs. The information should be there, and if it isn’t, talk with a manager or human resources department about why and what steps are being taken to rectify that problem.

First and foremost, payroll software can help with pay stubs. There are plenty of reasons why companies today are switching from manual to automated payroll processes and documents. The primary reason is that it cuts down on all kinds of time-consuming tasks-not just when it comes to generating pay stubs but also when it comes to calculating taxes and contributing funds into retirement plans or insurance policies. Before these programs existed, there was no simple way for employees (especially those who worked part-time or seasonal jobs) to monitor their earnings or keep track of their contributions without having a number of separate spreadsheets handy.


Kossi Adzo is the editor and author of He is software engineer. Innovation, Businesses and companies are his passion. He filled several patents in IT & Communication technologies. He manages the technical operations at

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