Warning: This post is going to be full of math. This is not a political post – this is a math post.
For the first two months of 2012, Social Security Tax is 4.2% of your wages and for the remaining months, it will be 6.2%. The wage at which you stop paying Social Security Tax for 2012 is $110,100. 
I would thus expect that the maximum Social Security Tax that I will pay is as follows:
- January/February: $110,100 / 12 * 4.2% = $385.35
- March through December: $110,100 / 12 * 6.2% = $568.85
- Overall total = $6,459.20
Since I will receive my first quarter bonus in one of (January, February), I will only pay 4.2% Social Security Tax on it, as will I on my January and February paychecks, despite these totaling almost $30,000 at my current calculations. Over the course of the year, I will still pay the $6,459.20 in Social Security Tax that I owe throughout the year, according to my calculations.
What exactly is the purpose of the new “recapture” provision of the tax law? It is suggesting that I will owe approximately another $176.41 at tax time come April 2013 simply because my first quarter bonus was paid out in one of (January, February).
Doesn’t this “recapture” provision defeat the whole purpose of phasing out the tax at the earnings level of $110,100? Those of us earning more than $110,100 in the year will not see Social Security in our old age past that earnings amount, so why I am being forced to pay more into Social Security than my math suggests? Is my math wrong?