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Posts published in “Forms”

Spring Cleaning? Record Retention Guidelines to Help Clear the Clutter

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A question I am often asked is ‘How long must I maintain my payroll records?’, and the answer is; “it depends”.   Reason being is that there are many different documents that are maintained within the payroll world by a myriad of federal, state, and local agencies, and a lots of overlap.  Some people put a blanket retention policy of seven years across all documents, but in some cases as we will see, even that may not be long enough.  Namely if the records are for an active employee. Let’s take a look at the more popular forms and documents, and bring some order to…

E-Verify – Do You Know Who You Hire?

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E-Verify started as a pilot program in 1997 to help employers verify the work authorization of new hires.   When you have an employee complete a USCIS Form I-9, you are taking the word of the employee and the face value of the documents they provide.   E-Verify allows you to confirm the provided documentation against multiple government databases. All employers must first complete an I-9 form for every new hire, within three business days of the date the employee starts work.  Employers must not begin the I-9 process until after the individual is hired.  The newly-hired employee jointly completes the I-9 form…

New W-4 – Complex Enough That It Comes With a Calculator

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If you are like me, you have been at the edge of your seat waiting for the IRS to release the 2018 Form W-4, Employee Withholding Allowance Certificate since January 1st.  Well, on February 28th the wait ended, and here is the new form in all four pages of glory.  Yes, four pages.  Double the prior year’s 1 page front and back form. At the end of the day, the certificate itself is still just a 1/3 of the first page where the employee will basically indicate whether they are withholding at Single, Married, or Married, but withhold at the higher…

The 123s and ABCs of Reading a W-2

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Over the next few weeks as your employees start to receive their 2017 W-2 form, they will most likely have questions as to what all those numbers mean.  For example, it is not uncommon for a salaried employee who earns $50,000 per year question why their Box 1 Wages only reflects $45,000.  The response is, ‘do you contribute to a pension plan or have pre-tax insurance, then if so those amounts reduce your “taxable” wage, which is what appears in Box 1’. To assist you with those questions, here is an explanation of what is in each box and what…

New Year – New Withholding Forms

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With the recent passing of the new tax law, we will find a significant delay in the IRS’ publishing of the 2018 W-4 Withholding Allowance Form.  In the meantime, anyone hired in 2018 should complete the 2017 form, and they will not need to complete the 2018 form when it is released.  Unless that is, if they want to later change their withholding.  A Form W-4 remains in effect until the employee gives you a new one.  When you receive a new form, begin withholding no later than the start of the first payroll period ending on or after the 30th…

New USCIS I-9 Form Released Today

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United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Form I-9 is used for verifying the identity and employment authorization of  all individuals (citizens and non-citizens) hired for employment.   On July 17th USCIS released a new form and employers have 60 days to implement this new version. First introduced in November 1986, this form is completed by both the newly hired Employee (where they state their eligibility to work -Section 1), and the Employer (where they verify the employee’s eligibility -Section 2)  within three days of hire.   The list of acceptable documents referenced by the employer to verify the employee’s eligibility…