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Compensation & Benefits

Key to 2020 withholding: Standard deduction amounts

The standard deduction amounts are now one of the main drivers for determining whether employees will have enough income taxes withheld from their pay. On the other hand, low-income employees may be able to claim the earned income credit. Here’s the basic information they’ll need to make this determination.

70% of us do some holiday shopping at work

One-third of employees surveyed recently say the holiday season distracts them from their work. For 70% of employees, part of the distraction is all the online holiday shopping they can get done at work.

Gov’t employees could gain paid leave to bond with new children

Federal government employees would be eligible for up to 12 weeks of paid family leave annually if a tentative agreement between the White House and Democrats in the House of Representatives survives the legislative process.

Health insurance costs rising faster than incomes

The average annual growth in the cost of premiums and deductibles for employees who get their health insurance through work has outpaced growth in the median U.S. income over the last 10 years.

New overtime regulations may affect 401(k) plans

If you reclassified some FLSA-exempt employees as nonexempt this year—thanks to the new overtime salary-level regulations that are scheduled to kick in Jan. 1—be aware that this could impact your 401(k) and health plans.

DOL seeks $400 million for Oracle pay bias

A federal court in California began hearing testimony Dec. 5 in a lawsuit that claims software giant Oracle underpaid current and former workers by more than $400 million while they worked on government contracts over the course of four years.

Workers’ comp model could curb opioid crisis

Abuse of prescription opioids has been cited as one of the leading factors in a recent decline in the life expectancy of working-age Americans. Now a federal program seeks to limit addiction by controlling how much medication injured federal government employees are allowed to receive.

Demonstrate good faith on wage claims by seeking advice from your attorney

If you don’t pay overtime as required by the Fair Labor Standards Act, you may end up owing both back pay plus a penalty equal to the amount you owed. But that’s not all; it could get worse.

Payments in cryptocurrency are subject to payroll taxes

Cryptocurrencies don’t change the basic rule that how someone is paid is immaterial to determining whether the remuneration is taxable. The issue is how cryptocurrencies are valued.

Half of us have raided our retirement accounts

Almost half of working Americans— 49%—have tapped their retirement savings to pay for things other than retirement, according to a new study by Bankrate.