The answer? ABSOLUTELY!

Many parents start thinking about summer jobs for their older children when summer rolls around. But it’s not just about earning money—it’s about making intelligent decisions to benefit you and your children.

Let’s break down key considerations and opportunities when it comes to making those summer earnings:

1. Understanding Employee vs. Contractor Status

Understanding whether your teen will work as an employee or an independent contractor (e.g., yard work, babysitting, etc.) is essential. This status affects how they file taxes and what deductions they can take. 

Employees will have taxes withheld from their paychecks, while contractors must handle their quarterly tax payments. 

2. Opening a Roth IRA

Why not turn a summer job into a retirement planning lesson? Opening a Roth IRA for your child allows them to invest part of their earnings for the future. 

What will a Roth look like for my child 50 years from now? 

If you made an initial contribution of $7,000 in your Roth IRA for 50 years with an 8% annual compounded interest rate, it will grow to approximately $328,311 by the time you are 68. 

The benefits are undeniable.

Schedule a call for help with getting this set up.

3. Standard Deduction for Dependents

For 2024, the IRS allows a standard deduction of up to $14,600 for single filers. If your teen earns less than this, they likely won’t owe any federal income tax.

This means they could take a job and use their earnings for savings or expenses without worrying about a significant tax impact.

4. Scholarships and Educational Opportunities

Some summer jobs, especially internships, offer scholarships or stipends that can be applied toward education expenses. These are typically tax-free if used for tuition, fees, books, and supplies required for coursework.

Encourage your teen to seek out and apply for these positions—not only do they provide valuable work experience, but the financial benefits are twofold.

5. Benefits Beyond the Pay

Summer employment fosters more than just financial earnings; it cultivates lifelong skills and character. Earning money instills a sense of responsibility and independence in teens, enriching their understanding of money management and paving the way for prudent financial decisions in the future.

6. Start Now, Not June 1st

“The early bird gets the worm” is a proverb that means people who start something early have the best chance of success…

Starting early leads to success. Encourage your child to begin their job search well before summer starts to maximize their chances of securing a beneficial position.

Tune into our blog next week:

5 Keys to Finding the Perfect Summer Job

Final Thoughts

A summer job is more than just a way to earn money—it’s a foundation for teaching financial literacy and responsibility. By choosing tax-smart employment and making informed decisions about income and savings, your child can maximize their earnings and get real-world financial management education. 

Encourage them to approach their summer jobs with a strategic mindset—it’s an investment in their future that will pay dividends down the road.

Have more questions? Schedule a call with us.

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