We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

How do I Pay Self Employment Taxes?

By Bethany Keene
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Self employment taxes refer to taxes that are paid on income that has been received from being self employed, or as the sole proprietor of a business. When filing a tax return in the United States, self employment taxes are paid to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and declared on a Schedule SE that is completed and submitted with the rest of the tax return documents, such as the the 1040 form.

Because tax laws can change every year, and may certainly be different in other countries, it is important to review the changes and learn the local rules on the amount of taxes that need to be paid on earned income as well as the way the income must be declared. Freelancers, independent contractors, or sole proprietors of businesses are all examples of individuals who may need to pay self employment taxes on income they have earned from working throughout the year. Citizens of the one nation who earn income in other countries often must declare this income on their tax returns, though many nations do have tax treaties so that people do not end up owing taxed to both countries.

It is necessary to calculate self employment taxes based on a certain percentage of earned income; this is because self employment taxes will typically only need to be paid if net income is over a certain amount. Tax rate percentages can change every year as well, so it will be necessary to look these up and complete the calculations to figure the amount of the tax. Free calculators can be found online, and many tax preparation software programs will do these calculations and create the tax forms automatically. It may also be possible to deduct a portion of the self employment taxes paid from the adjusted gross income, which can reduce the remaining income taxes owed.

People who work as freelancers or contract employees will typically need to make quarterly estimated tax payments throughout the year, of which self employment taxes are a part. Tax agencies offer worksheets to help individuals estimate their quarterly payments. Underpayments or skipping the estimated tax payments altogether can lead to significant tax penalties at the end of the year, so it is very important to calculate these figures and make the payments on time.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.