Federal Withholding and Your Pension

Federal Withholding and your Pension

Getting hit every year with a larger than expected federal tax bill? You may want to increase the federal withholding from your NYSLRS pension. Or maybe you’re getting a hefty tax refund every year. If you have too much withheld, you’re basically giving the government an interest-free loan. Maybe you need to adjust your withholding due to recent changes to the tax law for 2018 (if you’re not sure, you can check with your tax preparer, or you can use this Internal Revenue Service Withholding Calculator.)

But whatever your situation, you can adjust the amount we withhold from your retirement benefit at any time. Just follow these Step-By-Step instructions.

  1. Print our NYSLRS Form W-4P (Withholding Certificate for Pension or Annuity Payments) from our website. (This is a fillable form, so you can type in the information before you print it out.)
  2. Fill in the top of the form with your name, address, last four digits of your Social Security number and Registration number (if known).
  3. Complete one of the three numbered sections. (Do not complete more than one section.)
    • Complete Section 1 if you do not wish to have any federal income tax withheld.
    • Complete Section 2 if you want us to withhold based on current Internal Revenue Service (IRS) tax tables, your marital status and the number of federal exemptions you claim. To see how much that would be, use our tax withholding calculator. You can also have an additional amount withheld.
    • Complete Section 3 if you know how much you want withheld. Remember, the amount you should include here is the total amount you want withheld from your pension, not the amount you want to add or subtract from your current withholding.
  4. Print the completed form.
  5. Date and sign the form.
  6. Mail or fax your form to NYSLRS. Our address and fax number are at the top of the W-4P form.

Visit our website for other resources, including an interactive Understanding your W-4P Form tutorial, and more information about Taxes and Your Pension.

5 thoughts on “Federal Withholding and Your Pension

  1. Bruce Winsor

    Two years in a row we have been short on Fed. withholdings. We adjusted to 8-9% in order to cover. My wife and I are receiving pensions along with other employment. Individually, they fall short for withholdings but added together were got walloped. Hope this helps.

    1. NYSLRS

      We recommend checking with an accountant or tax preparer if you need to adjust your federal withholding but aren’t sure how.

  2. Joanne P. Malecki

    Thanks for the reminder. My accountant said, after doing my taxes this year, that I should increase my withholding or start to pay quarterly tax estimates, since I had to pay an increasingly higher amount this year, due to other changes in my income. Rather than having to “remember” to do those quarterly payments, I chose to use your form to increase the withholding amount from my monthly pension; thanks for providing the link/form. Jo

  3. Kendra Eichholz

    Not really. I may be looking into depositing a portion of my one pension into the federal taxes for the future. As of now…. I do not know…. Thanks anyway. I will reconsider it in the future months. Sincerely, Kendra


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