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An HR Glossary for HR Terms

Glossary of Human Resources Management and Employee Benefit Terms

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Payroll Tax Rates

What Are Payroll Tax Rates?

Payroll taxes for employees are deductions made from an employee’s paycheck, including:

  • Federal income tax

  • State income tax

  • Social Security

  • Medicare

Payroll taxes for employers are made up of:

  • Federal unemployment tax

  • State unemployment tax

  • Social Security 

  • Medicare

As of 2020, payroll tax rates are as follows:

Federal Unemployment Tax

Employer pays: 6%

Employee pays: 0%

State Unemployment Tax

Varies by state. To find this information, visit your state’s Department of Labor website.

Social Security 

Employer pays: 6.2%

Employee pays: 6.2%


Employer pays: 1.45%

Employee pays 1.45%