Teenagers and taxes: What qualifies a teenager for social security payments, and do they pay taxes on their benefits?
Teenagers and taxes: What qualifies a teenager for social security payments, and do they pay taxes on their benefits?

Teenagers and taxes: What qualifies a teenager for social security payments, and do they pay taxes on their benefits?


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Many people perceive social security strictly as a pension benefit. And it is true that it is a crucial element of many people’s pension schemes that finance around 40% of the average person’s pension expenditure. But 29.1% of Social security recipients in 2021 were not retired workers. These persons included people who had become disabled and survivors from deceased workers. And millions of them were teenagers.

See: Teenagers and Taxes – Are My Teenager’s Scholarships and Grants Taxable?
Find: Teens and Charges – Why Teens Should E-File in 2022

In 2019, 2.8 million people under the age of 18 claimed social security benefits with an average monthly benefit of $ 627.52, according to a fact sheet on social security. In addition, more than 113,000 students aged 18 and 19 received social benefits.

A teenager or a child may qualify for Social Security payments if they are born blind or disabled, depending on the income of the parents in their household.

If a parent dies, a surviving child may be entitled to their social security pension. The child or teenager can receive up to 75% of the deceased parent’s basic social security benefit, according to the Social Security Administration. However, a family can only receive a total of 150% to 180% of the deceased parent’s full benefit amount, distributed among all eligible family members.

Social benefits above certain thresholds are taxed and the income must be reported on Form 1040. A teenager or a child, like an adult, must file a tax return for their social security income if the total half of their social security benefits plus all their other income is greater than $ 25,000. This is the “basic amount” that applies to the application status of individual taxpayers.

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About the author

Dawn Allcot is a full-time freelance writer and content marketer specializing in finance, e-commerce, technology and real estate. Her long list of publishing credits includes Bankrate, Lending Tree and Chase Bank. She is the founder and owner of GeekTravelGuide.net, a travel, technology and entertainment site. She lives on Long Island, New York, with a true menagerie that includes 2 cats, a rambling kitten and three lizards of different sizes and personalities – plus her two children and husband. Find her on Twitter, @DawnAllcot.


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