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I was out of a job from March to June this year, so I expect to pay less tax and the tax bracket should be lower.

However, when I joined a new company in July, and filled out the W4, I couldn't find how I can make it so that less tax is withheld by the IRS and state, so right now when the paycheck came, 1/3 of the pay was paid as FICA or Medicare and as tax withheld. It seemed like the W4 form didn't have the job loss taken into consideration.

If the tax stays there with the government, it is 0% interest given to me until next year February or May (for 7 to 10 months), while my stock margin account is charging me 8%, and my credit card companies are trying their best to get 22.99% or 23.99% from me by different methods. So I am paying high interest when I could have money with less tax withholding to pay for them.

How do I make the withholding less in this case?

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    The only money you get back is federal income tax. You do not get "FICA or Medicare" refunded, because Social Security and Medicare are taxed at a fixed percentage, unlike your income tax, so there is no estimation involved.
    – Shamshiel
    Jul 21 at 9:47
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    Independent of fixing your W4, you might want to shop around for better margin rates. Assuming you actually use or anticipate using margin, rather than just using that as an example. And it doesn't matter what a card would like to charge, just what the one you actually revolve a balance on actually does charge.
    – jjanes
    Jul 21 at 16:17
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    @Shamshiel nit: with multiple employers (as here), if your combined wages exceed the SS cap ($147k for 2022) you do get a credit/refund of SS tax on wages over that cap when you file your income tax return -- not before, but if you expect this credit you can reduce withholding (or estimated payment). Jul 22 at 6:36

1 Answer 1

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You can submit a new W4 to your employer any time you need to make changes. You can reduce federal income tax withholding by adding deductions to line 4(b): W4 line 4(b)

To know how much to enter in the Deductions section, use the IRS Tax Withholding Estimator.

In the Income and Withholding step of the estimator you can account for multiple jobs, employment gaps, etc:

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After going through the estimator they will show results with a projected refund and a slider you can use to adjust how much refund you want to get. Sliding that bar down from what it initially shows will bring up a section on how to adjust your withholdings that will instruct you on how to adjust your W4 and also a link to a partially-filled W4 you can use based on your results.

Good point in the comments, don't forget to submit a new W4 at the start of the new year without this extra deduction so you don't end up with too little withheld next year.

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    @OP: If your withholding only needs to be lower during this year, you may need to submit a new W4 next year.
    – Brian
    Jul 21 at 16:46
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    I would definitely add something to this answer to emphasize resubmitting the W4 at the beginning of next year with the correct deductions
    – Kevin
    Jul 21 at 18:09

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