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IRS Data Affirms Payroll’s Vital Role in Nation’s Tax System

BY: Curtis E. Tatum, Esq. | 05/27/22

On May 26, the IRS released its 2021 Internal Revenue Service Data Book, which provides statistics that underscore the importance of payroll professionals to the integrity of the American tax system [IRS Pub. 55-B, rev. May 2022].

Primary Sources of Federal Revenue

The IRS Data Book reports that, of the approximately $4.1 trillion paid into the Treasury in fiscal year 2021, more than $2.7 trillion were transmitted by employers for employment taxes. This represents 66% of all federal revenue.

Payroll payments included:

  • $1.53 trillion in withheld individual income taxes
  • $1.17 trillion in employer and employee FICA (social security and Medicare) taxes
  • $6.28 billion in unemployment insurance tax
  • $5.31 billion in Railroad Retirement Tax Act taxes

To learn more about federal and state laws, regulations, and information to keep your company's payroll operations in compliance, check out Payroll Source Plus!


Curtis E. Tatum, Esq., is APA’s In-House Counsel and Director of Federal Payroll Compliance.