Social Security – Will I Owe Tax On My Benefits?

Whether or not you will owe tax on Social Security benefits will vary based on your situation.  Generally speaking, if your Social Security benefits were your ONLY source of income, you MAY NOT be subject to Federal income tax and MAY NOT have to file a tax return.

Taxpayers whom receive Social Security benefits in 2014 should receive a Form SSA-1099.  This form shows the Social Security Benefits received for the year.


  • Only Social Security. If Social Security was your only income in 2014, your benefits may not be taxable. You also may not need to file a Federal income tax return.
  • Social Security PLUS other income.  If you get income from other sources you may have to pay taxes on some of your benefits – and may have to file a Federal income tax return.

IF YOU RECEIVE OTHER INCOME (including that of a spouse where the filing status is married filing joint):

You can roughly calculate whether you need to file taxes by:

  • Adding 1/2 of your Social Security to all your other income.
  • Compare the amount of income to the threshold filing requirements below – according to your particular filing status.  If your income exceeds the threshold, a portion of  your benefits may be taxable.

The Three Base Filing Thresholds: 

  • $25,000 – IF FILING STATUS IS:
    • Single
    • Head of Household
    • Qualifying Widow or Widower with a dependent child
    • Married Filing Separate but have lived apart from spouse for full year
  • $32,000 – IF FILING STATUS IS:
    • Married Filing Jointly
    • Married Filing Separate – where you have lived with your spouse at anytime during the tax year

If you have further questions, you can obtain information at www.IRS.GOV