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Election workers must generally pay income taxes

Georgia residents who perform services for the government during an election must pay taxes on the income they earned. However, this income will not be subject to income tax withholding unless a worker specifically asks for that to occur. This is done by submitting a W-4 form to the agency employing the election worker.

In some cases, money paid to such workers could be subject to FICA tax withholding. This is true if there is a Section 218 agreement that doesn't have an election worker exclusion. It is also true if a worker meets the payment threshold to be subject to FICA tax withholding. This amount may be determined by the state or the entity that has hired the employee.

Absent a Section 218 agreement, workers are generally only required to pay FICA taxes if they make more than $1,800 in a year. Election employees are allowed to have FICA taxes withheld from their check if they believe that they will make more than that amount. In the event that they don't, those individuals may ask for a refund. If an election worker makes more than $600 in a given year, the employer must submit a Form W-2 even if FICA taxes are not withheld. Separate forms may be created for election work and work done in another capacity for the same employer.

In most cases, individuals must pay income taxes on wages earned throughout the year. This may be true even if no income or FICA taxes were withheld from a worker's paycheck. Someone who has questions about their tax liabilities may want to consult with an attorney. Those who are under audit or have received a notice may also want to consult an attorney for guidance.

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