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What exactly are high earners? The monetary thresholds are defined in the IRS table below. Wages and self-employment earnings on which Medicare tax is charged, and which exceed the thresholds listed, are subject to the "additional Medicare tax," as the IRS calls it. The classes of employment and types of payments which are subject to Medicare, as well as Social Security and FUTA, are spelled out in IRS Publication 15. Here are a few examples from the IRS.