PAYROLL

IRS revamps consent rules for FICA refunds

05/27/2015
The IRS has issued a notice and a proposed revenue procedure that cover the steps you must take to obtain employees’ consent before you refund overwithheld FICA taxes to them. The notice allows employees to furnish consent electronically and also clarifies your “reasonable efforts” if you can’t secure their consent.

Court: Employee's beef is with the IRS, not her employer

05/24/2015
A federal trial court has ruled that an employee who sued her employer, alleging that the employer’s share of FICA and FUTA were wrongfully withheld from her pay, had to instead file a refund claim with the IRS for those amounts. If the refund claim is denied, she can sue the IRS for her money, the court concluded.

Can an employee opt out of withholding on a bonus?

05/23/2015
Q: It’s likely that later this year, one employee will receive a bonus that will boost his supplemental pay to more than $1 million. In anticipation of that, his accountant has informed us that we don’t need to withhold federal income taxes at the 39.6% rate; the employee will pay the tax on his 2015 Form 1040, instead. Is that right—it sounds fishy to us?

What do we do when an employee pays back a signing bonus?

05/22/2015
Q: A new employee received a signing bonus last November, which he had to repay if he left the company within two years. He did leave, and now we don’t know what to do. Do we need to amend his 2014 W-2 form? What documentation must we collect from him?

Download this chart: State document requirements for employing teens

05/20/2015
Federal law sets the ground rules for employing teens, but state law controls the age at which they must obtain age certificates, working papers or parental consent letters and how long you must retain those documents. This information is summarized in this chart.

How does the Paid Sick Leave Law affect the information that must appear on paystubs?

05/20/2015
Q. We are trying to comply with California’s new paid sick leave law, but we are not sure what exactly needs to be included on the paystub.

Final regs clarify criteria for wraparound plans

05/18/2015
Final regulations include as an excepted benefit limited wraparound coverage—coverage that supplements, or wraps around, individual nongrandfathered health policies by providing additional benefits to part-time employees and retirees and doesn’t consist solely of cost-sharing subsidies.

How long do you retain W-2 information?

05/14/2015
Q: A former employee has requested a copy of his 2003 W-2 form. We backed up the data, sent it to a remote storage facility and purged it years ago. It would be extremely burdensome to pull it out now, especially for a former employee. What is the legal requirement for providing employees with copies of old W-2s?

Take two: Some EPPs get transition relief

05/08/2015
The IRS meant it when it said that all employers, regardless of size, will be liable for a $100 per day, per employee, excise tax if they pay for or reimburse employees who buy individual health insurance either on or off the individual exchange. Sort of. It’s now providing transition relief to certain employers and to certain reimbursement arrangements.

What HR needs to know about tracking employee time

05/06/2015
Supervisors and HR pros need to understand what they can and cannot do with time records. Problems can lead to legal disputes under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Chuck the checks and try direct deposit, payroll cards instead

05/06/2015
How many paychecks could Payroll chuck, if Payroll could chuck checks? All of them, if you pay employees through direct deposit or with plastic payroll debit cards. May is direct deposit month, so now is the time to convince skeptical employees of the benefits of direct deposit/paycards.

Vacations, closings, wild picnics! Dealing with summer's demands on Payroll

05/05/2015
Summer doesn’t have to be the season of your discontent. You can swim through the summer season’s special demands on Payroll, including employees’ vacation requests, if you remember the Fair Labor Standards Act's rules on working hours, calculating overtime when employees take a day off during the week and paying exempts.

Tax Court: Payments to kids are allowance, not wages

05/04/2015
Summer means kids working in the family business. But beware. The Tax Court tossed a sole proprietor’s effort to deduct as wages payments made to her children. According to the court, there wasn’t any consistent correlation between the hours worked and the amounts recorded as wage payments.

Cool down the summer hiring process

05/03/2015
Eager young adults may be papering the company with summer hiring inquiries and job applications. These tips will help you cool the summer hiring process.

Regs allow wraparound coverage for part-time employees

05/02/2015
Excepted benefits, such as limited-scope dental and vision benefits, aren’t subject to the Affordable Care Act’s requirements to provide affordable group coverage that provides minimum value. Proposed regulations would include wraparound coverage as a new category of excepted benefits. This coverage would be available to part-time employees and retirees. Under these regs, wraparound coverage would be permitted under a pilot program that begins no later than Dec. 31, 2017, and lasts for three years.
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