How to Read a Pay Stub: The Basics Explained

How to Read a Pay Stub | How to Read a Pay Stub: The Basics Explained | When you receive your weekly paycheck, what do you do with your pay stub? Many of us toss them away without a second thought, but these little pieces of paper are more important than you might think!

Your pay stub contains plenty of key facts about your salary and tax, but do you know how to read a pay stub? Luckily, pay stubs are fairly easy to navigate, once you know what to look for.

To learn more, keep reading to find all of the basics you need to know about reading your pay stub.

Employee Details

When you start a new job, you are likely to complete onboarding paperwork, such as your bank account details, W-4 form, and emergency contact.

When reading a pay stub, you’ll see your own details. This will usually include your name, job title, and pay grade.

Hours Worked

If your job is paid hourly, your typical pay stub will include the number of hours you worked during that pay period. A paystub may be issued every week, two weeks, or month, so the duration between pay will be reflected on your pay slip.

Look at your hours worked and make sure it’s accurate, as per your own records. If any overtime hours were worked, these should be noted on your pay stub as well.

Tax Paid and Withheld

Your tax form will also include withholdings from your pay. For most workers, state and federal taxes are automatically withheld, making it easier for you to file taxes each year.

The amount of tax withheld is based on your personal circumstances, as indicated on your W-4 form. If your tax status has changed, you should inform your employer as soon as possible.

Health insurance costs are another common deduction.

Annual Leave Balances

When reading your pay stub, you’ll also want to look for your leave balances. These will include both annual leave and personal leave.

Your leave balances will include how many hours of leave you took during that pay period, along with how many hours are remaining for the year. This is helpful data, in case you’re planning a vacation or time off.

Weekly Earnings

The final and most important piece of information is your weekly earning, or your take-home pay. This is the amount of money you earned during this pay period, minus taxes and deductions.

Your weekly earnings listed on your pay slip should match the amount you receive via check or direct deposit.

Use These Tips to Learn How to Read a Pay Stub

As you can see, knowing how to read a pay stub is important for any worker. It allows you to make sure all of your income and tax payments are recorded accurately.

Always get in the habit of checking your pay stub each week to make sure it’s correct.

Did you find this article useful? If so, please read on for more top tips.