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Compensation & Benefits

In the Payroll Mailbag: September ’19

Questions for the Social Security Administration, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, and the Office of Child Support Enforcement.

2020 adjustments for group health plans set

The Department of Health and Human Services and the IRS have released their inflation adjusted figures for group health plans for the 2020 calendar year.

IRS provides post-audit payroll tax advice

Payroll audits that result in tax underpayments have an unexpected, ugly side effect: employees will have additional FICA-taxable income. Worse: You may be completely out-of-pocket for the underwithheld income taxes that are now due. The IRS, in technical advice to auditors, instructs them on how to handle this additional income and taxes.

Employer in hot water for completing fraudulent W-2s

Revenge W-2s and 1099s are never a good idea. If you have a beef with a former employee, it would be best to leave the Social Security Administration and the IRS out of it.

FMLA covers some school-related absences

For years, employers have been told the FMLA doesn’t cover leave that employees take for their children’s school-related meetings and visits. But an eye-opening new U.S. Department of Labor opinion letter adds an important new exception to that rule.

Summer’s almost gone! Let’s take some time off

Labor Day is right around the corner. Have you been stuck at work all summer? Don’t be like Mississippi. Make like Ohio and get the heck outta here. Go on vacation!

Overtime rule forwarded to White House for final review

The Department of Labor sent its long-awaited white-collar overtime rule to the White House for a final review on Aug. 12. If enacted, the rule would raise the minimum overtime salary threshold by 50% from the current $23,660.

Employer survey: Pay to rise a modest 3% in 2020

U.S. employees hoping for larger pay raises next year may be disappointed. A new survey by the Willis Towers Watson consulting firm finds that U.S. employers plan to hold the line on budgeted pay raises in 2020, despite low unemployment and a tight labor market.

SECURE Act retirement legislation stalls in Senate

A bill that would make it easier for more employers to set up 401(k) retirement plans for their employees, which easily passed the House of Representatives in May, is languishing in the Senate.

Snapshot: What do bonuses reward?

Most employers offer some form of compensation above and beyond salary or normal hourly pay.