Surprises” on employee paychecks, though generally infrequent, do occur.  A few items to check throughout the year on your paystub to be sure your payroll company is reporting income and deductions accurately per your instructions throughout the year:

  1. Are your federal and state withheld taxes being withheld at the rate requested per your current W-4 certificate?
  2. If your employer is located in another state be sure taxes are being withheld to the correct state (generally your state of residence unless you are physically present and working in another state).
  3. Are benefits being deducted correctly on your paystub (flexible spending accounts for dependent care benefits and health care, health savings account, health and dental insurance, group-term life insurance)?
  4. Check that your salary deferral funded into your 401k or 403b plan is being properly withheld and properly categorized as either Roth or pre-tax.
  5. Be sure that your most recent pay increase and bonus payments are properly reflected on your paystub.