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Immediate Action Needed! Support the Small Business Tax Equalization and Compliance Act

Posted: June 9, 2011


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Like the restaurant industry, salon/spa professionals receive a significant amount of their income through tips, which, by law, must be reported as income. Salon/spa owners do NOT receive any of this tip income, yet are required to pay taxes on it. Beauty industry employers are responsible for paying the 7.65% FICA (social security and Medicare) taxes on all employee income, including customer-paid tips. While the restaurant and salon/spa industries share tip reporting burdens, spa owners continue to shoulder the added burden of paying FICA taxes on the tip income of their employees. Along with ensuring tax fairness, the FICA credit could help offset administrative costs associated with ensuring employee compliance on reporting tips and allow business owners to reinvest in their business and employees.

Job growth in the spa industry has outpaced the overall economy in eight of the past nine years; 2008 marked the industry’s 16th consecutive year of job growth. Home to a large number of entry-level jobs with significant potential for training and upward mobility, the vast majority of managers and salaried employees in salons/spas started out in entry-level positions. Additionally, the spa industry is one of America’s most diverse industries. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the spa industry employs a higher proportion of African-Americans, Asians and women than the overall U.S. workforce. Even so, this industry is not immune to the current economic crisis. Extending the 45(b) tax credit to spas will help this vibrant and important sector.

The Small Business Tax Equalization and Compliance Act is the professional beauty industry’s opportunity to gain tax fairness through a dollar-for-dollar tax credit on all FICA taxes paid on employees tips. Visit and click on the “Take Action Now” button to send a letter to Congress in support of the FICA Tip Tax Credit.