This paper presents an analytical approach, based on the limit-equilibrium state, to determine the critical inclination of failure surface and active earth thrust for a cohesive-frictional backfill with a broken slope and a surcharge load at a constant distance from a retaining wall under the seismic condition. A combined analysis using Mononobe-Okabe’s and Culmann’s methods within a trial and error procedure is performed in this study. The influences of several parameters such as wall height, surcharge magnitude, cohesion, and internal friction angle of the backfill, adhesion between the wall-backfill interface, tension cracks, horizontal and vertical seismic acceleration coefficients have been investigated on the critical inclination of failure surface and the active earth thrust. Additionally, the performance of the proposed approach is explored by geotechnical software (Geo5) and two available methods in the literature. All of the results and the detailed comparisons are given in tabular and graphical forms.