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I am an Indian citizen who moved to the United States on a J-1 visa. I worked for one employer for just over two years before moving to another employer for whom I worked for one year. I am now working somewhere else, on a different visa, and want to apply for permanent residence soon. While going through my old W-2 forms, I have noticed that my second employer did not withhold FICA taxes for the one year of my employment there.

AFAIK J-1 visa holders are exempted from FICA taxes for their first two years in the country. I thus believe that my second employer should have withheld FICA taxes for the entirety of my employment. I have spoken with the payroll manager at the second employer who agreed with my assessment but said that there is nothing they can do about it now. I have already filed taxes for the year in question.

My questions are (a) is there anything I can do to pay the FICA taxes that my employer should have withheld and (b) how likely will this come back to bite me in the future? I would be very grateful for any advice as I am a bit freaked out about not having paid the right amount of tax.

Thank you!

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  • There's always the form 1040-X "Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return". – RonJohn Feb 24 at 21:57
  • @RonJohn: That wouldn't help, as FICA taxes are not paid on the income tax return. – user102008 Feb 25 at 1:00
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    @user102008: sometimes they are: 4137 for unreported tips, 8919 for misclassified. (Plus Schedule H for household employer.) And a few groups of employees pay Schedule SE SECA instead of FICA even though they aren't actually self-employed. But AFAIK none covers the case here. Lakshmi: some J-1 are students who are subject to the 5-year rule, but J-1 teacher, scholar, business trainee etc are exempt for first 2 years of presence in a/each 6-year period; that sounds like it includes you although you don't give enough details to be sure. – dave_thompson_085 Feb 26 at 6:29

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