Payroll calculations you will definitely get wrong if you don't use a payroll software
Nigel Lim avatar
Written by Nigel Lim
Updated over a week ago

Age increases based on birthday month

CPF rates are different after your birthday month. You are always one year older after your birthday!
For example, if you are 54 years old and turning 55 years old in June, in the month of July, the applicable CPF rates change from 37% (20% employee + 17% employer) to 26% (13% employee + 13% employer).

Additional Wage Ceiling

Did you know that there is a maximum amount that employees can contribute to their CPF accounts in a year? At the time of writing, this amount is $37,740.

The Additional Wage Ceiling (AWC) estimates the maximum amount of Additional Wages that will be subjected to CPF contributions each year, not exceeding the maximum of $37,740. This celling has to be revised on a yearly basis. (Applicable to all Singapore citizens and SPRs)

The Additional Wage Ceiling formula is as follows:

AW Ceiling = $102,000* - Total Ordinary Wages (OW) subject to CPF for the year

*Calculated based on the prevailing OW ceiling of $6,000 x 17 months, estimated based on the bonuses that companies give out to their employees in a year.

e.g. If you earn $7,000 every month it will be computed as the following:

$102,000 - ($6,000* x 12) = $30,000

*The maximum amount of OW that attracts CPF is $6,000 per month

You can refer here for more examples of how AWC affects CPF contributions.
You can refer here for the Additional Wage Ceiling Calculator.

Over-paying or under-paying CPF contributions relating to the Additional Wage Ceiling

Additional Wage Ceiling discrepancies:

  1. If an underpayment was made, employers are to calculate the discrepancy of the employer and employee's share and contribute it back to CPF at the end of the year in December or the employee's last month of service.

  2. If an excess were deducted from your bonus and contributed to your CPF account, employers are to apply for a refund here.

Different CPF rates apply to lower wages

The standard 37% (20% employee + 17% employer) doesn't apply to all who belong in the 55 and below category, it depends on how much you earn! Look at the table below for more details:

Wages subject to CPF contributions are dependent on SPR obtain date

Congratulations on becoming a Singapore Permanent Resident! Did you know that if the PR grant date is not on the 1st of the month, your wages are to be prorated based on work done while you are considered an SPR?

For example, if you earn $3,000 as a monthly salary and PR is granted on 15th May 2020, the wages subject to CPF should be based on a prorated amount of 15-31 May 2020 only and not the full $3,000!

e.g. ($3,000/21 workdays) x 11 workdays (15-31 May) = $1,571.43 of your wages are subject to CPF. This also applies to any allowance that the company is paying you for the month!

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