TN 8 (02-17)

GN 05002.010 Social Security Benefit Statement-Box 3, Benefits Paid

The total benefits paid to a beneficiary in the calendar year is shown in Box 3.

A. Description of Amount in Box 3

This box appears below Box 3 and contains a description of all payments made to the beneficiary as well as payments that were withheld but count as payments. Sometimes an asterisk (*) may appear after the amount shown. This indicates that retroactive payments for earlier years have been included in the total.

B. List of Box 3 Legends

The “Description of Amount in Box 3” may show one or more of the following legends:

1. Payments

  • Paid by check or direct deposit – The amount paid to the beneficiary by check or direct deposit. This amount also includes prior monthly accrual (PMA) payments made after death but not monthly benefits and returned checks beginning with the date of death (DOD). See SM 00630.051 Beneficiary Deceased.

  • Medicare premiums deducted from your benefit – The amount withheld from benefits to pay Medicare premiums for the beneficiary.

  • Workers' compensation offset – If a beneficiary’s Social Security disability benefits are offset by workers' compensation, then this legend will show the amount offset, as required by law. However, this legend will not show reductions due to any other public disability program.

  • Paid to another family member – This legend pertains to the facility of payment provision (Section 203(i) of the Act). The entry appears for a non-working beneficiary when benefits are paid to a working beneficiary who, because of work, would have received no benefits or only a partial benefit if Section 203(i) did not exist. (As of January 1996, this provision no longer applies).

  • Deductions for work or other adjustments – This legend shows any Title II benefit withheld to recover a Title II, Title XVI, or Title XVIII overpayment. The overpayment may have occurred in an earlier year or incurred by another person. Note that when we withhold a Title II benefit to recover a Title II overpayment, the amount will appear in Box 3 and Box 4. However, when we withhold a Title II benefit to recover Title XVI or Title XVIII overpayments, this amount will appear in Box 3 only and no entry will appear in Box 4.

  • Attorney fees – This includes fees paid to an attorney or a representative and other legal obligations. While Title II benefits are subject to taxation, Title XVI payments are not. When we pay retroactive Title II disability benefits to a Title XVI beneficiary, this legend will show only those Title II benefits paid from the Social Security Trust Funds (the legend will not show SSI payments).

  • Voluntary Federal income tax withheld – We will show an amount in this legend if the beneficiary voluntarily has federal taxes withheld from the benefit.

  • Treasury benefit payment offset, garnishment, and/or tax levy – If we show an amount in this legend, either the Treasury Department applied that amount to a debt or debts owed to other Federal agencies; benefits were withheld to pay child support, alimony, or court ordered victim restitution; and/or benefits were withheld to pay debts to the IRS . Direct inquiries about what type of offset is involved to SSA at 1-800-772-1213. Direct questions related to federal taxes to the IRS at 1-800-829-7650.

  • Total additions — this will appear if the box shows more than one of the above entries.

2. Subtractions

The following subtraction legends do not count in determining gross benefits paid:

  • Non-taxable payments — These amounts include payments for months before December 1983, Lump Sum Death Payment, and amounts refunded to the beneficiary for excess Medicare premiums, WC offset, or attorney fees;

  • Amounts for other family members paid to the beneficiary — the amount shown was paid to a working beneficiary but would not have been paid if the facility of payment provision (section 203(i)) did not exist. (As of January 1996, this provision no longer applies); and

  • Amounts refunded for garnishment for alimony and child support and/or tax levies. See SM 00630.348 EVENT-148 Garnishment Refund and SM 00630.349 EVENT-149 Tax Levy Refund

3. Prior Years' Payments

If the total payments include benefits for prior years, these payments will be identified by the legend, “INCLUDES”. For an example, see exhibit 1 of SSA-1099-SM at GN 05002.300 Examples of Completed SSA-1099s where it shows the following: “Includes”: $9,124 paid in 2002 for