Poll Worker Payment Info

Below is a collection of all of the information registrars have submitted regarding documentation and payment for poll workers.

In summary, poll workers DO NOT need to be considered employees, and compensation of an election worker is not subject to income tax withholdiing. In addition, “…municipalities that employ U.S.citizens as poll workers … or poll watchers on Election Day do not need to complete I-9s for these individuals.”

There are different thresholds for when payments must be reported to the IRS versus when any taxes (FICA) are withheld.

The general rules:

A Form W-2 must be filed for election workers who receive payments of $600 or more, even if no FICA and income tax was withheld.

For calendar year [2014], FICA taxes apply to a worker whose remuneration is [$1,600] or greater. When payments made to a worker

meets the current $1,600 threshold, all payments paid to the worker are subject to FICA, including the first $1,599. The threshold dollar amount is indexed

annually and adjusted for inflation.

This means that for all practical purposes, your basic poll workers who receive less than $600 annually will not be sent any tax documents from your municipality. If they earn more than $600, they should get a W-2, and if they earn more $1600 or more, they are also subject to FICA (Social Security and Medicare taxes).

The relevant materials, as collected by Greenwich, Westport, and Suffield Registrars:

Letter from Congressional Subcommittee on Elections

Social Security Administration specifies "Social Security and Medicare taxes do not apply until the election worker is paid $1,600 or more."

IRS Bulletin (see page 50) states "Compensation of an election worker is not subject to income tax withholding."

See this page on the IRS site: Election Workers: Reporting and Withholding

The clearest summary is found in the July 2012 newsletter from the IRS Office of Federal, State and Local Governments, which states "Compensation paid to election workers is not subject to income tax withholding under Section 3401(a) of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC)." Read all the way through, however, because even though not subject to income tax withholding, poll workers paid more than $1600 are subject to Social Security and Medicare taxes (FICA).

I-9s are not needed from poll workers per:

The immigration Reform & Control Act of 11/61986 (IRCA) Public Law 99-603;

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcements (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations 11/19/2013;

U.S. Citzenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)

See I-9 not required document below.